Via Russell Joslin (editor of the inestimably cool SHOTS Magazine) comes this New York Times article about the photographer Frederick W. Glasier, who documented the lives of Ringling circus performers in the early 1900s.
“Iron Jaw Kimball Twins, 1920s” by Frederick W. Glasier (John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art & Eakins Press Foundation)
“Glasier spent the beginning of the 20th century capturing the Greatest Show on Earth. Wielding a 20-pound, 8-by-10 King view camera, he trailed the street parades before the show, the back-lot scenes behind the big top, the high-wire acts that unfolded beneath it. His photographic feats conjured the entire spectacle of the show.”
“Zelda Boden, around 1924″ by Frederick W. Glasier (John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art & Eakins Press Foundation)
“But that’s not all. Through his portraits of clowns and other performers, Glasier also revealed the soul of the circus. The haunting stares and intimate poses of his subjects speak directly to the viewer and offer everything from delight to despair. They collapse the distance between us and them.”
“Maude Banvard in The Catch, at the Brockton Fair, Brockton, Mass, 1907″ by Frederick W. Glasier (John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art & Eakins Press Foundation)
Coilhouse readers are strongly urged to view these photographs in full screen mode at the NY Times site. Heyday, a full exhibition of Glasier’s work –much of it never presented before now– begins May 15 at the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, Florida.