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College of Arts and Sciences
Department: Art and Art History
Masks; ritual costumes
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A fantastic group of spooks and skeletons, ghosts and goblins, animals and nursery-room characters stroll through a collection of American Halloween costumes in a book by photographer Phyllis Galembo, Dressed for Thrills: 100 Years of Halloween Costumes and Masquerade (Henry N. Abrams, 2002).
Galembo started photographing people in festival costumes in the 1970s. Her interest in ritual costumes continued after a 1985 trip to Nigeria, where she photographed traditional priests and priestesses. From there, Galembo went to Brazil, taking photos of the traditional priests and priestesses of Candomblé, an ancient African religion. Galembo has had exhibitions at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City and the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. She is the co-editor of Divine Inspiration from Benin to Bahia (Athelia Henrietta PR, 1998) and Vodou: Visions and Voices of Haiti (Tenspeed Press, 2005).