Posts Tagged ‘Window Shopping Everett Shinn’

The fantasy of window shopping in New York City

September 23, 2019

When Ashcan artist Everett Shinn painted this woman seemingly spellbound by the stylish mannequins behind a department store window, the concept of “window shopping” was a relatively new phenomenon.

Shinn completed the painting, simply titled “Window Shopping,” in 1903. It perfectly captures the consumerism ushered in by the rise of the Gilded Age city’s magnificent emporiums, where the latest fashions were on display on the Flatiron and Chelsea streets that once made up Ladies Mile.

“Shinn may have appreciated the way shop windows, like the vaudeville stage, created a fantasy space that functioned also as a site of cultural exchange,” art consultant Janay Wong explained on a Sotheby’s┬ápage focusing on the painting.

“Moreover, he may have been drawn to the ‘modernity’ of the shop window, which had only recently come into being, the result of new technologies that made possible the production of plate glass, colored glass, and electric light.”