Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Louise Brooks in Los Angeles exhibit

The Vanity Fair exhibit, which drew large crowds and much acclaim while on exhibit in London, is coming to Los Angeles. Opening October 26 at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA),  "Vanity Fair Portraits: Photographs 1913–2008" brings together 150 of the famed magazine's iconic portraits. This is the first major exhibit to bring together the magazine's historic archive of rare vintage prints with contemporary photographs as well. The exhibition will complete its tour at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, Australia,  where it will run June 12 – August 30, 2009.

Of special note to Louise Brooks devotees and fans of the 1920's is the inclusion of portraits of a handful of celebrities from the 1920's. "Among the exceptional people portrayed in the exhibit are Pablo Picasso, Albert Einstein, Jesse Owens, James Joyce, Katharine Hepburn, and Fred and Adele Astaire. The introduction of modernism into photography was particularly evident in the progressive work of [Edward] Steichen (1879–1973), who held the title of Vanity Fair 's chief photographer for 13 years. Steichen was America's leading photographer of style, taste and celebrity, and many of his iconic photographs are in "Vanity Fair Portraits," including those of Gloria Swanson, Louise Brooks, Anna May Wong and Paul Robeson. The exhibition also showcases definitive portraits of the Jazz Age, including now-classic studies of Louis Armstrong, Josephine Baker and Noel Coward."

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