Virginia Oldoini, the Countess de Castiglione, died in Paris on this day in 1899. A famed beauty and imperial courtesan, she bowed out just before the end of the 19th century having supplied its greatest series of photographic portraits, her collaborations with photographer Pierre-Louis Pierson.
Italian artist aleXsandro Palombo recently depicted Marge Simpson in Castiglione’s most famous pose (entitled Scherzo di Follia) as part of a series in which the Springfield superstar recreates iconic fashion imagery. Being a fan of both the countess and the cartoon (and if you think The Simpsons has gone downhill I defy you to watch the recent episode where Carl rediscovers his Icelandic roots to a Sigur Rós soundtrack and tell me the show has completely lost it), I’m pretty happy right now.
The countess in the afterlife
The countess in the cinema
A Casati family tree
Dress-down Friday: Ganna Walska
Places: Place Vendôme
Pierre-Louis Pierson: overpainted photographs of Castiglione
Places: Théâtre des Champs-Elysées