Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Tailor

"Then, don't miss 'The Tailor', the immortal 'Tailor,' by Moroni, (No. 697), one of the gems of the National Gallery; I always go to see 'The Tailor.' Whatever else I miss I find my way to him. There he stands in 'white doublet and red trunk hose, at his board with the shears in his hands, about to cut a piece of black cloth,' standing back, as some one else says somewhere, to see the effect of his cut!

Could any dressmaker ever look as picturesque as that Tailor! Not an Ideal! you will say, like the portrait of the Doge we have just been considering! No, not exactly an Ideal, but a Representation, and a Representation with a good bit of character in it too! To me it conveys the thoughts of a man about his work; he is going to make that coat just right, depend upon it, and he is thinking what cut will do it!"

C.E. Skinner, Art: The Handmaid of Beauty, Part of a course of lectures on beauty, Privately printed 1899, reprinted 1903, p. 71, 72


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