Collages > Past Work: The Grand Tour

A continuing series of mixed-media collages that, over time, has turned the docile women of 19th-century fashion plates into daring travelers.

The series began in late 2010 with a paper doll challenge. I wanted to showcase hand-painted, fashion plates from mid-to-late 19th century women's magazines such as Godey's Lady's Book and Peterson's Magazine. These plates were painted by teams of women, who labored anonymously and arduously, often whipping through 16 to 20 paintings a day.

For a while, the women in the collages simply traveled on The Grand Tour of The Continent that was a requisite for well-heeled young adults in Europe and America. In time, however, the collages took a humorous turn while I was creating a series for the exhibition "Cincinnati Dreams Italy." After that, I felt more confident in the series and the women. It was time for them to become bolder. And, so they have.