Thursday, October 02, 2008

La Piganino

This 1867 lithograph by an unknown artist satirizes amateur musicians and the contemporary vogue for all things Italian, according to David Tatham, who included this image from his personal collection in his wonderful The Lure of the Striped Pig: The Illustration of Popular Music in America, 1820-1870 (Barre, Mass.: Imprint Society, 1973). His book is full of amazing images, many of which would be of great utility for the nineteenth-century cultural historian. In fact, I'm planning on getting a lot of use out of them in my American Cultural History course this semester. But back to La Piganino--what an amazing image! The fine folks at Porkopolis (here) note that this mock instrument is part of a long tradition of animal instruments, including the Cat Piano (image and story here). Note the musical pig in the picture in the background. More on the pig and whistle, and for that matter, the whole Dedham Striped Pig controversy, later...

Labels: ,


Blogger Daniel E. said...

Hi Brett,

Good to see you back! And with a post that mentions my humble homage to the pig... I do like the idea of this Piganino so, I'm tempted to study music. I think a modern music sampler would alleviate the need for both a PETA defense and a waste holding pond.

As of 9/28/08 Porkopolis has a whole new look and feel via a total redesign of the page code. Now I have more free time to add content.

You might like the Bibliography. I'm slowly adding all the reference books I've used in my research and all those from my personal library.

Root on!
Dan at

7:04 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home