Monday, October 31, 2011

New Exhibition: Circus Posters

The Amazing American Circus Poster: The Strobridge Lithographing Company
The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art
September 17, 2011 - January 29, 2012

The exhibition catalog includes numerous images of women circus performers: "Evetta the Only Lady Clown," "Madam Yucca: The Champion American Female Hercules," and "Polly Lee." The essays in the  catalog cover a wide range of topics, including "Bearded Ladies, Dainty Amazons, Hindoo Fakirs, and Lady Savages: Circus Representations of Gender and Race in Victorian America," by Janet M. Davis.

Related Sources
Davis is also the author of The Circus Age: Culture & Society Under the American Big Top (University of North Carolina Press, 2002). Under the Big Top profiles her work on this book.

A search for circus posters in the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Online Catalog retrieves more than 200 images. The Wisconsin Historical Society's Let's Go to the Circus includes more than 200 photos (e.g., trapeze artist Jennie Rooney). The Harrison Sayre Circus Collection (Florida State University) offers posters and photographs. Archives Hub provides a gateway for Fairs and Circus History collections in the UK.

Adam Forepaugh & Sells Brothers Enormous Shows Combined. Strobridge Lith. Co. 1896. Prints and Photographs Division. LC-USZC4-930.

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