1/ Pink was not a common color in the fashion of the Middle Ages; nobles usually preferred brighter reds, such as crimson.
However, it did appear in religious art from the 13th and 14th century, in works by Cimabue and Duccio, the Christ child was sometimes portrayed dressed in pink, the color associated with the body of Christ.
2/ In the high Renaissance painting the Madonna of the Pinks by Raphael, the Christ child is presenting a pink flower to the Virgin Mary. The pink was a symbol of a spiritual union between the mother and child.
During the Renaissance, pink was mainly used for the flesh color of faces and hands. The pigment commonly used for this was called light cinabrese: a mixture of the red earth pigment called “Venetian red” and a white pigment called “Bianco San Genovese”.
3/ The apogees of pink color arrived in the 18th century, when pastel colors became very fashionable in all the courts of Europe, particularly thanks to Madame de Pompadour (1721–1764), the mistress of King Louis XV of France, who wore combinations of pale blue and pink, and had a particular tint of pink made for her by the Sevres porcelain factory, created by adding nuances of blue, black, and yellow.
4/ In the 19th century England, pink ribbons or decorations were often worn by young boys; boys were simply considered small men, and while men in England wore red uniforms, boys wore pink. The clothing for children in the 19th century was almost always white, since, before the invention of chemical dyes, clothing of any color would quickly fade when washed in boiling water. Queen Victoria was painted in 1850 with her seventh child and third son, Prince Arthur, who wore white and pink.
In late nineteenth-century France, Impressionist painters working in a pastel color palette sometimes depicted women wearing pink, such as Edgar Degas’ image of ballet dancers.
5/ At the US presidential inauguration of Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953, Mamie Eisenhower, the President’s wife, wore a pink dress as her inaugural gown. It was the turning point for this color since the public started to associate pink as a color that "ladylike women wear”.
6/ In the 20th century, pinks became bolder and brighter, in part because of the invention of chemical dyes that did not fade. The pioneer of the new wave of pinks was the Italian designer Elsa Schiaparelli (1890-1973). In 1931 she created a new variety of the color called “shocking pink” made by mixing magenta with a small amount of white.
7/ Nature gives us at sunrise and sunsets when the path of the sunlight through the atmosphere to the eye is longest, the blue and green components are removed almost completely, leaving the longer wavelength orange, red and pink light to pass through, so we can witness spectacular landscapes.
8/ In nature we find a wide selection of spectacular natural pink stones, such as pink Topaz (Brazil), pink Sapphire or Corundum (Tanzania), rose Quartz, and more.
9/ Fauna world gives us to admire pink-colored animals and birds, such as pink iguana, pink dolphins, pink flamingoes, roseate spoonbill, and more.
Floral world is even richer in pink of all tones and shades: roses, tulips, hibiscus, dahlia, peony, hyacinth, hydrangea and more.
10/ Cultural and Social facts:
In Japan, pink is the color most associated with springtime due to the blooming cherry blossoms. This is different from surveys in the United States and Europe where green is the color most associated with springtime.
In Europe and the United States, pink is the color most associated with sweet foods and drinks: strawberry ice cream, cotton candy, macaron with raspberries, rosè vine, and pink champagne.
Pink is often used as a symbolic color by groups involved in issues important to women, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people:
- A Dutch newsgroup about homosexuality is called nl.roze (roze being the Dutch word for pink), while in Britain, Pink News is a gay newspaper and online news service.
- The pink ribbon is the international symbol of breast cancer awareness.