Artists Caught on a Camera’s Canvas

“Sometimes art imitates life, sometimes life imitates art. But something special happens when art imitates art imitating life. In the 1920s, with some spillover before and after, The New York Times made a convention of photographing artists with both their works of art and the people (or pets) depicted in those works.

For the subjects, it meant getting their pictures in the paper twice in the same day, captured — once in the flesh and once on canvas or in clay. For the subjects’ mothers, presumably, it meant clipping twice as many likenesses to send to far-flung relatives. Imagine the postage and long-distance calls.

And for the artists, it was a chance to step inside their own creations, to appear in a visual story not just about the muse but about the creative process itself. The photographs here date from the years 1918 to 1942, when culture watchers were debating the place of photography among the older, more handmade arts like painting and sculpture.”

In 1930, Albert Einstein sat for a bust by Arthur Lowenthal in Berlin.

Paulina Longworth, granddaughter of Theodore Roosevelt, sat for two paintings by Elena and Berta De Hellebranth, sisters. in 1930.

Cecil B. DeMille, movie producer, stood with a bust of himself and with the actress Nancy Lee, between takes shooting “The Godless Girl” in 1928.

More amazing photographs HERE.

via The New York Times


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