PMA Presents “What Are They Wearing?!?! Fashion and Identity in British Portraits”

Portland Museum of Art

On Thursday, October 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., the Portland Museum of Art (PMA) will present the lecture, “What are they Wearing?!? Fashion and Identity in British Portraits” given by Amelia Rauser, Franklin & Marshall College Associate Professor of Art History. The lecture is $10 and free for PMA members. For more information, visit

Rauser’s lecture will focus on the portraits in the exhibition Treasures of British Art 1400-2000: The Berger Collection and the clothes the sitters are wearing. Clothing from the Renaissance to the 18th century expressed cultural norms that indicated character and individuality. This talk will look at fashion and its history with special attention to how gender and class are conveyed through clothing. Rauser is the author of Caricature Unmasked: Irony, Authenticity, and Individualism in Eighteenth-Century English Prints (2008), which examines the origins of political caricature in 18th-century England. Her new project, Living Statues: Neoclassical Culture and Fashionable Dress in the 1790s-London, Paris, Naples, is a study of the emergence of a radical style of undress in the 1790s and its connection to contemporary aesthetic, political, and scientific thought.