Wining, Dining and Social Life: Food and Beverage Wares, 1600–1860

Leslie Grigsby, Winterthur Museum

Sunday, December 7, 2014Mini-exhibit: 11:00amLecture: 11:00amGould Theatre, Palace of the Legion of Honor
Legion of Honor
Partial Dinner Service, Dihl and Guerhard, Paris, 1800–15

Partial Dinner Service, Dihl and Guerhard, Paris, 1800–15, Winterthur

Note: The first lecture is from 11:00am till noon and the 2nd lecture is from 2:00pm to 3:00pm at the Legion.

Leslie Grigsby will talk about ceramics and glass as part of British and American dining and drinking traditions of the 17th through the 19th centuries. She will place these objects in a larger context of fitting out dining and drinking spaces with furniture, textiles, metalwork and other types of objects.

Consumer choices for acquiring goods depended on the purchaser’s cultural background, place of residence and, perhaps most importantly, the depth of pocketbook. Over time, production methods made consumer goods less expensive. Improved transportation and less costly trade routes also increased accessibility to a broader range of service wares, foods and drinks. Cookbooks and other guides to entertaining provided widespread access to fashionable new ways to serve and entertain guests. Such social literature instructed hosts and hostesses on such niceties as what to place on a sideboard during which course; how napkins should be folded; and what potables should be served in which glasses in what sequences. Ms Grigsby will also utilize period paintings, prints and drawings to illustrate what to serve and how to serve it. Of course, it’s the actual wares that demonstrate what objects were utilized in wealthy and more modest homes, as well as public spaces.

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