Traite des Nègres (The Slave Trade)

Designed by Frédéric Etienne Joseph Feldtrappe
After a painting by George Morland British
After an engraving by John Raphael Smith British

Not on view

Frederic Feldtrappe produced this textile in the early nineteenth century during a moment of intense debate in France over the viability and morality of the slave trade. Of the four narrative scenes, two reference earlier paintings by English artist George Moreland and contrast the brutality of European slave traders with the kindness of Africans who minister to a shipwrecked European family. The other two scenes, based on engravings by Frenchman Nicolas Colibert, juxtapose a happy African family with the appearance of European traders in Africa. Their cache of trade goods (including textiles) ominously foreshadows the horrors of the traffic in human beings.

Traite des Nègres (The Slave Trade), Designed by Frédéric Etienne Joseph Feldtrappe (1786–1849), Cotton, roller printed, French, Alsace

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