New Painting: Debutante

One of the pieces I have finished recently draws much inspiration on the coming out party/cotillion tradition, which is prevalent in the Southern and more affluent regions of the United States.  One can see or read about examples of a girl fretting about this event in literature and cotillion lessons are even referenced 21st-century style by Sheldon in a Big Bang Theory episode when asked about his dance knowledge growing up in East Texas.

The imagery of the painting itself draws on the film adaptation of the Virgin Suicides, which subverts a traditional coming out party theme in the wake of a mass suicide. The concept was pushed along after seeing designer, artisan, and parody gas masks and children's gas masks from vintage photos online.
Debutante - by Amanda Christine Shelton
acrylic on wood, 24x24x2 inches
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Coming out parties are a little different than purity balls which are making the media right now.

In my own personal experience things like "purity balls" (those dances celebrating and pledging viriginity-which are becoming more the norm?) were not a huge thing when I was growing up, but there were many rite-de-passage occasions where the ritualistic white dress was worn (graduation, various initiations and university events), and yet I didn't wear virginal white at either of my weddings (my first dress was yellow and green and my second was champagne with my bright blue shoulder tattoos showing) ...  I know white as a color will always be symbolic but I also find it interesting how we wear white at some ceremonies and black at others and this is different in other countries and cultures... where white may be worn at funerals rather than black, or red is the traditional wedding color... the association of colors to traditions...