Monday, March 4, 2013

Louise Brooks artwork featured in UK exhibit

Louise Brooks and other silent film and stage stars are included in a just opened exhibit in England. The exhibit features the work of Ian Beck, the popular author and illustrator. The exhibit, "Limelight Pictures," includes new images by Beck created specially for the Nightingale Project, a charitable project which seeks to brighten up the environment in mental health services through art and music. The exhibition opened on February 27 at the South Kensington and Chelsea Mental Health Centre in London, and remains on display until May 31, 2013.

Beck is well known as a children’s writer and illustrator. He got his start in the 1970's doing commercial work, including drawings for the recording industry. He designed and illustrated album covers, most notably the triple gate-fold album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, for Elton John. In the 1980's, he began illustrating and writing books for young readers. Beck wrote his first novel for children, The Secret History of Tom Trueheart, Boy Adventurer, which was published in June 2006 and went on to be translated into more than twenty foreign languages. His novels include other works in the Tom Trueheart series, as well as Pastworld, and The Haunting of Charity Delafield.

The "Limelight Pictures" exhibit comprises portraits of stars of music hall and early cinema. They include Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Laurel and Hardy, Max Miller, Josephine Baker, Little Tich, Anna May Wong, Jean-Louis Barrault, Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich and others. Purchases of signed prints from the show will support the Nightingale Project’s work.

Via email to the Louise Brooks Society, Beck wrote, "I am an ENORMOUS fan of Miss Brooks and have been since I saw Pandora’s Box on a 16mm print while at Art School back in the 1960s. My own wife is forced to have her hair cut in the preferred Brooks Bob style. To me Louise is the epitome of grace glamour charm and the frankly erotic, I feel as helpless as any of her movie ‘victims’ when confronted by any image of her moving or still. I have drawn a number of other silent stars for the exhibition."
I like Ian Beck's work, and encourage you to check out his exhibit (if you are lucky enough to live in London) or his webpage at

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