Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Louise Brooks to be featured in exhibit

At least one vintage book featuring Louise Brooks will be featured in "Reading the Stars," an exhibit of books, magazines and other vintage reading material published during silent film era which will be on display at the San Francisco Public Library. All of the material - published during the Teens, Twenties, and early Thirties - pertain to the movies.

"Reading the Stars" is part of a small constellation of exhibits and programs titled "Shhhhhhh! Silents in the Library." The exhibits run June 25 through August 28 in the Main branch of the SFPL, on the Fourth Floor and Sixth Floor History Center Exhibit Space. 

If you plan on coming to town to attend to the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, don't miss this chance to take a look at these library exhibits. I curated "Reading the Stars," and it is the fourth exhibit in about 12 years which I have helped put on. Additional details to follow. More info at http://sfpl.org/index.php?pg=1006779101

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Requesting Louise Brooks

A few bits of encouraging news.... yesterday, I received a request from a commentator for Michigan Public Radio who asked for a review copy of my Louise Brooks edition of The Diary of a Lost Girl. I realize a review copy request is not the same as a review, but here's hoping. And today, I exchanged emails with a Spanish-born writer living in Mexico who is working on a novel about Louise Brooks. This novelist was asking about certain historical details pertaining to the actress. The body of literature around the actress continues to grow.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The GREAT comics historian Bill Blackbeard has died

The GREAT comics historian Bill Blackbeard has died. The New York Times has an article on his passing at http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/01/arts/design/bill-blackbeard-comic-strip-champion-dies-at-84.html

"An author, editor, anthologist and ardent accumulator who died in March at 84, Mr. Blackbeard is widely credited with helping save the American newspaper comic strip from the scrap heap, amassing a collection considered the most comprehensive ever assembled." His collection included Dixie Dugan, Windy Riley and other strips associated with actress Louise Brooks. 

Art Spiegelman,the RadioLulu listener who created the Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic narrative Maus, said in a telephone interview with the New York Times, “A filmmaker like Martin Scorsese couldn’t make what he makes if he had never heard of D. W. Griffith and Orson Welles." "Similarly, as my art form develops, it’s clear that the future of comics is in the past. And Blackbeard was the granddaddy that gave us all access to it.”

"It Girls" article discusses Louise Brooks

"It Girls," an article on Lapham's Quarterly by Academy Award winning documentary film maker Peter Foges, discusses Louise Brooks and Greta Garbo and the years they both lived in New York City. It is an interesting piece, and worth reading. I might even speculate myself and guess that someone, someday, might turn this bit into a short story.

[A small correction. Foges writes " Louise had worked at Saks for years selling gloves—and when she needed to, turning tricks." I beg to differ. Brooks only worked briefly at Sacks, and didn't turn tricks (as anyone can tell) in the sense she was a prostitute. She may have received cash or gifts for favors, though.] The article can be found at http://www.laphamsquarterly.org/roundtable/roundtable/it-girls.php


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