Wonderland Circus

Wonderland Circus, Sideshow Coney Island by Reginald Marsh; 1930; photo from Ringling Museum of Art

I love this painting.  There’s something raw about it; something private, yet public. Like the artist happened upon this insanely rowdy moment, and no one cared that he documented it.

What I really love, though, is the woman in blue in the front. She knows the artist is watching but she doesn’t care. She’s in control, leading, pulling a guy along for the ride. The painting shows a group of circus performers, but somehow this audience member gets the spotlight.

And, really, who at one point doesn’t want that?

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