Lately I’ve been coming across Lee Grant a lot. A great (and underrated) retro icon! She has published a memoir, “I Said Yes to Everything.” LOVE the title. I always enjoyed her mix of sultry beauty mixed with intelligence, her excellent acting, and her signature look – bob with bangs in a fiery auburn hue. She won an academy award for her part in that 1970s classic movie, “Shampoo” with Warren Beatty, and was nominated for her first and second movie roles. This week TurnerClassic Movies has the fabulous Ms Grant as a guest, and is screening many of her movies. How delicious! She is now 87 years old, and she has a lot to say about her life in Hollywood in an era when an actress was not allowed to grow old (they barely are allowed now!) She really DID say yes to everything, including a facelift in her 20s!(?)
Here is a great quote from an article in the New York Post on July 5, 2014,
She might be forgiven for worrying about her looks: Because of husband Arnie Manoff’s membership in the Communist Party, Grant was blacklisted in 1952 by the House Un-American Activities Committee and banned from performing in TV or film until 1964. That career hiatus, spanning her most marketable years (ages 24 to 36), made the striking Grant agonizingly conscious of her sell-by date.
I am so enamored of these wonderful women in the coolest eras! If you get a chance, watch or record her on TMC. She is still as sharp and feisty and auburn as ever!
Last night I watched the 1976 movie “Network”. I forgot what a good movie it was, with great cinematography and cool, creative lighting. And who wouldn’t work hard on lighting the shots if you were framing the face of the glorious Faye Dunaway? She won the Academy Award for her performance, and she is perfect as the hard-driving career-climbing 1970s television visionary. The movie still rings true about the evils chasing the beast of ratings, especially now with the endless parade of reality shows.
But it was the unique and extraordinary beauty of Faye that struck me… I went googleing to see more images of her, and she literally took my breath away! Oh my, could there have been anyone as beautiful? Particularly in Bonnie and Clyde… poor Warren Beatty, no slouch himself, he had to compete with such a fabulous thing of nature!
Here are some images of her, and once again I know why I am in love with all things retro! If my hair was straight, I would get a “Bonnie” bob straight away and pull out my berets! Now she is on my list to add to my shop… click on the “shop” link above to see my retro homages and perhaps soon she will be there!
If you get a chance make sure to watch (and record!) the Smithsonian Channel’s presentation of “Blondies New York.” So great to see Debbie and Chris Stein carousing down memory lane of New York in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. She HAD to be the most beautiful Punk Princess ever… ripped up clothes and thrift store t-shirts never looked so good… They talk a lot about creating the music and building the tracks, the last thing to come was Debbie’s unique voice. Debbie was interviewed saying that in that era she had to point out that her name wasn’t “Blondie” and that it was a band! I can’t even think of the word without thinking of that face and those cheekbones. Rapture!
I made a collaged image of her to add to the shop. Click here or on the image to see it in the store! I want it super large over a fabulous turquoise love seat, like the one below. I guess it’s time to redecorate!
Go to my web store here!
“Terry was everywhere in the 60s – he knew everything and everyone that was happening” Keith Richards
Before the annual Academy Awards show each year here in Los Angeles, there are many nostalgia – themed shows and articles remembering stars and icons from previous eras. It’s almost as if the past is more glamorous and impossibly cool than the present, and the stars of today are just waiting for enough time to pass when they too, will immortalized by one or two memorable photographs. Arguably, there is no greater documenter of cool than the amazing Terry O’Neill. His snap of Brigitte Bardot with the wind whipping her hair is one of the most famous shots of one of the most famous icons. There is a new reprint out with hundreds of his mesmerizing photographs, “Terry O’Neill, Introduction by Dylan Jones” published by ACC Editions. I want it! I could look at his photos endlessly. He is 75 years old and still going strong. Oh, the stories he could tell… but he won’t…
“I’ve been repeatedly asked to write my autobiography – I have seen an awful lot of famous people at their best and worst – but I’m not interested in making money trading their secrets or mine. I want my pictures to tell a story not sell a story.” Terry O’Neill
I dearly love my blog… and there are always so many cool things I want to write about, but sadly I have been absent from posting. Well, this is a new year, and there are always those resolutions to keep
I went to see “American Hustle” and they played that great movie trailer for the Jean Luc-Godard film with Brigitte Bardot “Le Mepris” (“Contempt” in English) as an advertisement to the films 50th anniversary release (FIFTY years… can you believe it?) It is considered one of the greatest film trailers of all time, and I have to say, it does the film proud. It is as stark, modern, bizarre, beautiful, and confusing as the film itself. I LOVE that film, and I love Bardot in it. Some things just have their right place and time, some things don’t need to have a lot said for them, they stand for themselves.
Watch it here!
Some film stills (omg how great were the sets!)
There is a new book out by Taschen Publishing, the amazing art book publishing house, on Emilio Pucci. Pucci, if you do not know already, was the absolute master of intricate kaleidoscope colors and prints. He liked to boast that no one with the surname of “Pucci” had held a working job for the last 1000 years! Hence, his first foray into business was called “Emilio of Capri” to hide the fact from the other Pucci family members that he was “working.”
By the early 1950s, Pucci was achieving international recognition for his bold and colorful prints, which were worn by the biggest celebrities of the era. His beautiful silk scarves are collectors items. I’m glad he decided to work!
This weekend I drove up the beautiful California coast to San Simeon, in central Cali. It is always a pleasure to escape the city of Los Angeles and all of it’s hubbub. The Golden State is gorgeous, and although the weather forcast predicted rain, it was a rare, sunny weekend (lucky me!) It is easy to see why William Randolph Hearst purchased the land above San Simeon Bay to build his castle for himself and Marion… a more spectacular setting would be difficult to find. The castle is as awe inspiring as it must have been in it’s prime party days of the roaring ’20s.
I have always been fascinated by Marion Davies. According to Wikipedia, she was a much better actress/comedienne than history has claimed (due in a large part to a sad portrayal in Orson Welles movie “Citizen Kane”), but Hearst’s love, devotion and immense wealth did nothing at all to help Marion’s career. She was doomed to throwing lavish parites and drunken revelries, and never achieved the success as an actress that she so dearly wanted. In later life, she worked tirelessly for charities.
Still partially intact is Marion’s beach house in Santa Monica; I pass it often and think of her. It is now a private beach club. She is the ultimate story of someone who had it all, and at the same time, had nothing. Hearst’s wife would not divorce him so they never married, and her talent went unacknowledged. Though I rarely focus on this era for my art prints, the trip up north and the sad story of Marion inspired me to do a image of her. It is the Golden Age of Hollywood in the Golden State!
I’ve been seeing some very interesting new fashion for Fall 2013, among those are the voluminous and luxurious styles from Rochas. The looks are both retro and modern at the same time, recalling the shapes of the 1950s yet looking very new. Delicious! And who could not love the mosaic bejewelled treasures from Dolce and Gabbana? Early Christian byzantine art brought to life to be seen anew. I LOVE the colors and the complexity and I find them inspiring and very creative. There is so much inspiration in the fashion world.
I particularly like the Patchwork dresses I’ve been seeing.. they remind me of collage and layering in art forms. It is something tricky to achieve in both fashion and art. What clashes… and what is harmonious together?
I think the use of black and white makes it much easier to pattern clash. It is something I should try as I usually use a lot of color.
Below is one of my newer more “earthy” patchwork pieces. For now it is only available in my Etsy store (click on the image to visit my store!) as I have too many industrious activities going on and keeping up with them is exhausting (my life functions as a patchwork as well!) I think it is most beautiful as a canvas.
But please take your time to peruse my website, where I have many images not on etsy:
And as Autumn is near, of course I think of Paris, and this seems to represent a piece of a patchwork memory of Paris… It is time to go again. YAY!
I read an excerpt of this book, “A Furious Love” by Sam Kashner, Nancy Schoenberger in Vanity Fair. I was so fascinated by the “Marriage of the Century” that I had to go and get the book! It was a fascinating read, and perhaps it romanticized their love, but Richard Burton was quite the romantic and wrote all kinds of sweet love notes and letters to Elizabeth. What woman doesn’t like that? They HATED to be called “Liz and Dick”…. they were Elizabeth and Richard. By many, many personal accounts, they were BOTH more beautiful in person than on film. Elizabeth’s loveliness lasted well into her prime and people were shock by her beauty in person. Richard, on the otherhand, was quite the hunk… every woman was attracted to him and his beautiful voice. I just love to read about their time and the era they lived in, and reflect about how it has passed, never to return. I miss old Hollywood glamour!
Tragic and sad story all around, though.
It inspired me to make a “Elizabeth” pop art influenced canvas of the infamous Hollywood icon for my store. If you like it, go check it out by clicking on the photos!