Peggy Turchette

2618 Thornbird Pl, Boulder, CO 80304

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The Pavlova Project: A collection of costumes exploring the life and art of Anna Pavlova.

The Pavlova Project, in simplest terms, is a “Visual Biography.” It tells the life story of a real historical person, Anna Pavlova (1881-1931), who was not only the most famous ballerina of her day, but also a bold and pioneering woman with her own ballet company who traveled across the entire world. I tell this story through the costumes and fashions that she wore. Included with Pavlova in my collection are her friends, teachers, dance partners, and other important people in her life. Through archival photographs and the written word, I have meticulously researched almost 100 costumes and fashions and have recreated them in one-quarter scale. They are presented on 16” vinyl manufactured dolls which serve as mannequins. Every outfit I have recreated has a story of its own, and if the dressed mannequins are viewed in chronological order, they tell the story of Anna Pavlova from her childhood in Russia in the 1880’s, all the way to her final performance in London in 1930. I drew inspiration for my project from a famous collection of miniature fashions called "Le Theatre de la Mode" which was created after World War II by the couture houses in Paris. This collection, displayed on wire mannequins, celebrated the survival of the fashion industry in Paris following four years of Nazi occupation. It toured the world in 1947, the year I was born.

I grew up in Boston MA and attended the New England School of Art & Design, concentrating in Commercial Illustration. While still in school I began working as a freelance illustrator, always supplementing my art income with dog walking. In 2003 I moved to Boulder CO, where I continued freelancing and dog walking while attending the School of Botanical Art & Illustration at The Denver Botanic Gardens. I received a degree with honors in 2007. In 2010 I reluctantly closed my illustration studio and turned to dog walking as my full-time job while caring for elderly parents. Meanwhile, I had become enchanted with the extraordinary story of ballerina Anna Pavlova, a story that right away I knew was one worthy of being shared with others. There was no one collection anywhere in the world dedicated to this ground-breaking woman. I realized that as a visual artist I had a unique opportunity to introduce Pavlova to contemporary audiences in a completely original way. This collection is what I came up with. It is my way of sharing Anna Pavlova’s story with you.

Sculpture, Fiber, Mixed Media

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