For some reason—though I can’t recall the exact motivation—I found myself examining various types of hats and observing individuals adorned with them. Not just any hats, but those that enjoyed popularity during the 15th-16th century, particularly as depicted in paintings by Brueghel and his contemporaries. These hats were not merely utilitarian; they were frequently ornate, featuring plumes and vibrant colors. One might argue that the hat served as an extension of one’s personality, akin to a contemporary Instagram profile.

The intricate details of these hats also hinted at the craftsmanship and artistry of the period. Feathered trims, elaborate embroidery, and luxurious fabrics were not just accessories; they were statements of wealth and sophistication. The more I studied the paintings, the more I marveled at the skill of the artists who captured the essence of an entire era in their depictions of fashion.

Additionally, the symbolism attached to each type of hat was intriguing. The broad-brimmed hats worn by farmers represented a connection to the land, while the feathered hats of nobility conveyed a sense of opulence and power. It was as if the hats were silent storytellers, narrating tales of social structure, cultural values, and personal identity. My curiosity transformed into a quest to understand not only the fashion trends but also the underlying narratives woven into the fabric of these historical accessories.

“A man wearing a hat made of pearls”.
(69 x 90 cm)
Acrylic on canvas.

“A man wearing a hat with a feather”.
(69 x 90 cm)
Acrylic and uni paint marker on canvas.

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