The Art of Lingerie: J. M. W. Turner

Of all the artists I’ve done in the “Art of Lingerie” series, Turner is by far my favorite. He has such an amazing feel for color as well as an interesting balance between figurative work and abstraction that he seemed like a perfect artist to pair with lingerie.

Turner (1775-1851) was an artist who gained acclaim early in his career, which gave him free reign to experiment in the latter half of it. I am unabashedly a fan of his later work (I’m only medium-enthused about his early work, really). A Turner painting, The Burning of the Towers of Parliament, is in the running for my favorite painting ever, but I decided not to feature it here because it’s lingerie pairings weren’t quite as good.

Rain Steam and Speed the Great Western Railway

Carine Gilson, Nichole de Carle, Ell & Cee

In many ways Turner’s exploration of the power of the steam engine paired with the abstraction of nature prefigures Monet’s work on almost exactly that subject a few decades later. I thought this was such a perfect painting to pair with lingerie because of the juxtaposition of the strong, black, architectural railway lines and the soft, diffuse steam around it. To me, the Nichole de Carle bra and knicker explore similar shapes to the railways, while the Ell & Cee panties are a delicate, transparent chiffon that resemble the way the train disappears into the mist. This Carine Gilson bra was such a perfect fit for the color, I had to include it. The yellow-orange is such a distinctive color, it makes the entire painting somewhat unexpected, even disconcerting.

Norham Castle Sunrise

Rosamosario, Princesse Tam-Tam, Sonata Lingerie

This view of Durham Castle is a study in delicacy. All of the lingerie I’ve paired with the painting is lacy and diaphanous, to mimic the small details and subtle lines that bring out a scene from the mist, like this Rosamosario babydoll. I chose the yellow/beige combination of the Princesse Tam-Tam panties to match the small, yet strong, pure yellow strokes in the painting. The lavender Sonata bodysuit seemed like a perfect approximation of the faded, purple castle in the far distance, as the different opacities of the sheer lace mean that it seems like it disappears and reappears on the body.

Snow Storm, Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouth

Shell Belle Couture, Tres Bonjour Latex, Made by Niki

This is one of my favorite works of art ever. The blurred, abstract storm is powerful and lovely, with the snow, sky, and sea merging together almost incomprehensibly. The Très Bonjour latex stockings were a pair I originally thought of to work with a Jackson Pollock post. However, when I was making this post, I thought of them and knew they would be perfect, both because of the appropriate coloring and because the splashes of paint are appropriate for Turner’s semi-figurative style. The black Shell Belle Couture chemise and the white Made by Niki skirt and bustier top feel like perfect counterparts: the black chemise is the black, translucent water, while the white skirt and bustier top are like the lashings of snow surrounding the ship in the center of the painting. I think if you saw the black tulle and white fringe moving it would make the effect even more storm-like.


Each time I do a piece in this series, it’s challenging. Somehow I expected it would get much easier as I got used to it– but it’s fun to see what pairings I can make and what you all think about my choices!

Miss the previous artists? Check out my posts on Jasper Johns, Jean-Honore Fragonard and Salvador Dali.

  1. I love how these mini collections evoke specific moods, that directly relate to the paintings themselves. I specifically enjoy th juxtaposition of the Shelle Belle, and Made by Niki pieces in relation to “Snow Storm”.

  2. Pingback: The Art of Lingerie: Roy Lichtenstein « The Lingerie Lesbian

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