The Unwelcome Customer, 1772

The 1772 print, The Unwelcome Costumer, depicts a bull forcefully entering a milliner’s shop, disrupting a shopper who has been browsing through a box of goods. However it is the shopper, rather than the bull, who inhabits the central illuminated space of the image, and to whom the viewer’s eye is drawn. The implication of this satirical image is that it is her shopping habits which are unwelcome. The shopper, like the bull, monopolises the attention the staff, and leaves the shop and the products in disarray. The items she has viewed and rejected are left disordered and muddled, while the shop assistants scurry around tidying up after her browsing and trying to predict and minimise the damage of her next move.

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This entry was published on November 1, 2012 at 12:20 pm and is filed under Eighteenth Century, Prints and Images, Shopping and Retail History, Women's Dress. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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