“Dressing Up” Exhibit Catches Photographer’s Eye

Our current museum exhibit–Dressing Up, Standing Out, Fitting In: Adornment & Identity in Maine, 1750-1950–is a big hit. After all, who wouldn’t get a kick out of seeing some of the Maine-related clothing, costumes, uniforms, jewels, hats, and the other accessories and accoutrements that have expressed what it means to look one’s best over the past couple of centuries?

Window display, Benoit's, Portland, ca. 1930

The actual artifacts are complemented by a variety of images showing “dressed up” Mainers of the distant (and not so distant) past. These portraits and photographs really grabbed the attention of photographer Heather Frederick of Vox Photographs. Especially interested in vintage photos, Heather raves about the images presented in the show in a recent VoxPhotographs blog post. Some of the items that caught her fancy: a painted portrait of Passamaquody Indian, a colored ambrotype of a firefighter, six miniature tintypes in a tiny locket.

Knowing that Dressing Up’s array of images is but the tip of the Maine Historical Society photo archives iceberg, she ends her post with a wish: “Please: lock me into the photo archives at MHS for a year! My definition of heaven.”

You have plenty of time to catch the exhibit (but don’t put it off!). Dressing Up runs through May 27, 2012.


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