Portraying Pregnancy: from Holbein to Social Media
Author: Karen Hearn
Publisher: Paul Holberton Publishing in association with The Foundling Museum
Dimensions: 17 cm x 1 cm x 24.5 cm
ISBN: 978 1 911300 80 9
It is surprisingly rare to see pregnancy depicted in historical British portraits. Indeed, before the later 20th century the visible representation of individual pregnancy in any medium was uncommon, or only subtly alluded to. Even comparatively recently, it could be regarded as shocking.
In Portraying Pregnancy the author Karen Hearn examines moments in history where pregnancy was virtually invisible and others at which it became relatively prominent. While broad in sweep, spanning 500 years - from the loosened lacing of Holbein's Cecily Heron to the proud nudity of Serena Williams captured by Annie Leibovitz - it is full of personal and often affecting stories, intersecting with politics, medical progress, the lives of artists (male and female), and with changes in social behaviour.