Snake Charmer

  • Dennis Burlingame, Snake Charmer, 1935, oil on fiberboard, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Bequest of Olin Dows, 1983.90.214

Luce Center Label

Dennis Burlingame created many paintings based on his experiences in the circus. This image shows a snake charmer in the middle of her act, with a box full of snakes by her side. The generous curves of the woman’s figure and the curly pattern in the wallpaper echo the loops in the snake’s body as it winds around her shoulders. The shabby scenery and muted colors suggest the performer and her act might be past their best, and evoke the tawdry, marginal existence of circus folk.

Title
Snake Charmer
Artist
Date
1935
On View
Dimensions
21 7/8 x 11 in. (55.5 x 28.0 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Bequest of Olin Dows

Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on fiberboard
Classifications
Keywords
  • Performing arts – circus – animal tamer
  • Figure female – full length
  • Animal – reptile – snake
  • State of being – other – obese
  • Object – furniture – chest
Object Number
1983.90.214
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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