The Far Traveler
Historically, people have traveled for many reasons: exploration, pilgrimage, migration, trade, diplomacy, or education. Until the advent of steam power in the 19th century, journeys were made on foot, on the backs of animals, in carts or carriages pulled by oxen or horses, or aboard boats powered by oars or sails. Traveling even short distances was time-consuming, and even for the wealthy, it was often risky and rough.
With the development of new modes of transportation, however, travel solely for the pleasure of visiting new places and seeing new things became more common. Railways, steamships, automobiles, and airplanes all fostered the growth of travel as a leisure activity.
To travel in comfort - and in style - required specialized clothing and equipment. And, of course, what necessity called for, fashion enhanced. Inspired and challenged by the requirements of portability and economy of size, designers created artful and ingenious solutions to the problems faced by the traveler.
The aura of romance and adventure surrounding travel also inspired artists to create works that reflected or influenced society's perception of travel and the means of travel. The works in this gallery reveal some of ways in which art and industry responded to the needs and desires of travelers and the concept of travel, during the 19th and 20th centuries.