The family of Glimmerglass Board member Jim Barton has generously underwritten the new exhibit at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut. A Child’s View: 19th-Century Paper Theaters features 32 examples from England, Germany, Denmark, France, Spain, Austria and the United States. The miniature playhouses are on loan from the private collection of Eric G. Bernard of New York City.
These intricate miniature theaters were constructed out of printed paper, adhered to cardboard and mounted on a wooden frame. The theaters were marketed to young people in the 19th century before the availability of children’s periodicals and mass-produced toys. The colorful theaters, along with the small playbooks from which children recited, provided a unique and interesting way for children to expand their imaginations and delve into the world of theater.
The exhibit will be on view through January 30, 2011. To see images of these paper theaters, click here. The Wall Street Journal’s Barrymore Laurence Scherer writes about the exhibit here.