Drawn from the Ringling's permanent collection of photographs, rare books, and works on paper, Expressive Bodies surveys the ways in which artists have conceived of the human form over four centuries in Western art.
Critical to the success of any circus is advertising. For centuries, banners have been used to promote the show and the star performers. These restored banners were created by Frans De Vos (1880 – 1936), a prolific scene designer who lived in Balegem, Belgium.
Behind Closed Doors: Art in the Spanish American Home, 1492–1898 is the first major exhibition in the United States to explore the private lives and interiors of Spain’s New World elite from 1492 through the nineteenth century, focusing on the house as a principal repository of fine and decorative art.
The lovely ladies of the ring were prime material for advertising with posters illustrating their incredible performances, their classic beauty, and the evolving social construction of femininity in American society.
This exciting exhibition features photographic and video works by famous living Chinese artists. Reflecting the innovations of our media age, their art provides a view of the changing Chinese urban landscape.
Danny Lyon’s iconic book The Bikeriders is one of the most significant photo-documentary works of Postwar America. Lyon, while still finishing college, began riding with and photographing motorcyclists in Chicago at races and “scrambles.”
Salvator Rosa’s Baroque landscapes have captivated audiences since the seventeenth century. This installation explores the often overlooked figures that appear in those scenes and in his famous series of etchings.
The Ringling and Thomas Chimes have had a long history together as the museum organized the first survey exhibition of his work in 1968. On view will be the impressive Ringling Mural measuring some 17 feet across accompanied by preparatory studies and a selection of characteristic portraits.
This exhibition displays works on paper that represent the significance of human and animal exhibition, as well as balloon flight - domains where this crossover between education and entertainment was most palpable.
Ethnological congresses, menageries and side shows were among the attractions associated with the tented traveling circuses from their earliest days. An astounding group of lithographs illustrate the importance of such secondary attractions to the advertising of American traveling shows.