Travel and Leisure says the exhibit “examines the importance of clowns in circus advertising, from the 1850s to the contemporary age, and includes such gems as a 1930 image of a Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus Clown, a poster created by Erie Lithographing & Printing Co.”
The displays showcase and celebrate the iconographic nature of clowns in addition to their role in circus art and advertising.
The Ringling Museum has its roots in the circus; it first began when the family moved the Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey headquarters to Sarasota nearly a century ago. The Circus Museum followed in 1948, with the Tibbals Learning Center displaying circus models in 2006. Though the visual and performance styles have changed, the impact of clowns on the industry remains powerful to this day.