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Tressa Octave About

Attended SUNY Purchase as a photo major. Attended Mass College of Art and Design for Museum Education. Gallery representation is Deborah Martin Gallery in Los Angeles CA 2 comments


How They Evolved

By Tressa Octave

The origin of water globes (later renamed snow globes) traces back to the 1840s as decorative, water-filled paperweights. As they grew in popularity, they evolved into ornaments and novelty items and in the 1950s it was estimated that every household in America had at least two snow globes. These unique, novelty items have withstood the test of time.

My fascination with snow globes began in the 1960s with my family as we vacationed throughout the United States by car. Each trip was marked with a snow globe and a lasting memory of my childhood vacations. Utopia was in those globes. I have been sculpting and constructing snow globes for a decade. These globes are far from the innocuous globes I collected as a child. My globes have touched upon subjects such as lesbian dating, Homeland Security, the debacle of the government's effort to rescue the people of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina and - probably my most controversial piece - pedophilia in the Catholic Church. My goal is not to shock or dramatize, but - often by the use of satire or irony - to reveal the basic truths underlying the experiences and events that affect us in today's world.

I have begun to deconstruct the globes by taking close-up photos. By magnifying and zooming in on a specific area, I am able to control and manipulate them aesthetically, as well as, transform their social and political meaning. These prints are available in limited editions. They are photographed digitally and printed on archival photo paper.


Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, MA

Museum Education

SUNY at Purchase, Purchase, NY



Spring Arts Collective

Los Angeles, CA

Mixed Media

Massachusetts College of Art

Boston, MA

Mixed Media

Provincetown Art Association

Provincetown, MA


SUNY at Purchase

Purchase, NY



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