Glamour of the Gods

garycooper_crop

Gary Cooper, MGM, 1934; Photo: Clarence Sinclair Bull

A precious glimpse at one of the world’s most incredible photo collections from the golden age of Hollywood is to be found in Robert Dance’s opulent book, Glamour of the Gods.

All the photographs are drawn from the extraordinary archive of the John Kobal Foundation in London. John Kobal was the last century’s pre-eminent authority on Hollywood photography and was the first collector of studio portraits who systematically sought to understand photography’s important role in creating and marketing the great stars central to the Hollywood mystique, realizing they’d one day be equally important, if not more so, than the movies they made. Garbo, Dietrich, Brando, Bogart, Grace Kelly and Rita Hayworth are among the famous faces featured and in many cases these are the career defining images of their era.

Above is Clarence Sinclair Bull’s incredibly elegant study of Gary Cooper, done for MGM in 1934. Further evidence, as if any were required, that they don’t make movie stars—or even photographs—like they used to.

 

 

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~ by eaesthete on 07/12/09.

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