The Design Observer Twenty

Luc Sante | Slideshow

Circus: The Photographs of Frederick W. Glasier

Circus: The Photographs of Frederick W. Glasier: Slideshow: Slide 16

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Mademoiselle Octavia, Snake Charmer, circa 1901

The lady snake charmer was a staple feature of the sideshow at the turn of the 20th century. Known as the “Yankee Snake Charmer,” Octavia toured with Buffalo Bill's Wild West show. In a time when long skirts and sleeves were the established fashion, Octavia’s form-fitting, sleeveless outfit covered with writhing snakes provided a sensual aspect to her act.

Jobs | April 01