« The history of the Luxardos began in the first years of the 20th century when the young photographer Aldo Luxardo decided to leave Pise (Pisa) and set his lens on far objects: America. Alfredo, with his wife Margherita, stopped at S. Paul in Brazil – country that will mark the destiny of the whole Luxardo family. His subject changed, from the American myth to the Amazonian tribes: group photos and portraits developed and printed in absolute empirical ways. In Brazil his three children were born: Elio, Elda and Aldo. In 1928 Alfredo Luxardo returned in Italy where he took over the photo studio Sam Bosch (Photographer of the Royal House) in via XX Settembre. Here began the history of the liaison Rome-Luxardo.The three children, Elio, who previusly joined the Experimental Center of Cinematography, Aldo and Elda worked in their father’s studio. It was the thirties and the famous studio in via del Tritone fixed some features that developped a following and signed a epoch. Diffuse lights, combined with reflexes, dark settings and light cuttings that carved faces and designed bodies. In few words the Myth of Beauty was born, the cult of the body. The studio was populated of divas and sports champions, intellectuals and artists, from Pirandello to Marinetti, from Assia Noris to Isa Miranda, from Valentina Cortese to Alida Valli, to the world champion Primo Carnera. In the postwar period there was a cooperation with the « Folie de Broadway » and than the beginning of the contest Miss Italia from which came celebrities like Loren and Lollobrigida. The Dolce Vita – the intense friendship with Federico Fellini – movies like « Poveri ma Belli » (« Poor but Beautiful »), actors like Mastrianni and Gassmann. These were the images of the sixties. The last dream of Elio Luxardo has been Sperlonga, where he retired to live. On the Mediterranean coast, the photographer looked for the lights and colors of the native country, but in vain. He died in 1969 at the age of 59. His brother Aldo continued to work alone in the family studio – that his sister Elda left marrying the producer Argento, father of the director, Dario. But the recall of the land of origin became stronger and stronger and, at the end, Aldo decided to go back to Brazil. » Luxario gallery
« John Gutmann (1905–1998) was one of America’s most distinctive photographers. Born in Germany where he trained as an artist and art teacher, he fled the Nazis in 1933 and settled in San Francisco, reinventing himself as a photo-journalist. Gutmann captured images of American culture, celebrating signs of a vibrant democracy, however imperfect. His own status as an outsider—a Jew in Germany, a naturalized citizen in the United States—informed his focus on individuals from the Asian-American, African-American, and gay communities, as well as his photography in India, Burma, and China during World War II. Gutmann’s interests in painting and filmmaking, his collections of non-Western art and artifacts, and his pedagogy, all figure in a body of work at once celebratory and mysterious.
Gutmann was born to prosperous German-Jewish parents, in Breslau, Germany (since 1945, Wrocław, Poland). At age twenty-two, he graduated from the regional Academy of Arts and Crafts, where he studied with leading Expressionist painter Otto Müller. In 1927 Gutmann moved to Berlin, where he taught art to schoolchildren, participated in group exhibitions, and in 1931 had a solo show at the prestigious Gurlitt Gallery. However, his career was interrupted by the rise to power of the National Socialists in early 1933. While his family made plans to immigrate to New York, Gutmann set out on his own with San Francisco as his destination, and photography as his new profession. Before departing Germany, he acquired a Rolleiflex camera, hastily shot three rolls of film, and managed to secure a contract from the Berlin office of Presse-Photo. Making the most of a bad situation, he explored a new life as a foreign correspondent who would supply the very modern European illustrated press with views and reports from the American West.
By 1936, he had broken his contract with the Berlin press agency and made a new one with Pix in New York. By 1937, he had begun to teach art regularly at San Francisco College (later San Francisco State University), and this became his primary profession after a World War II era stint in the U.S. army. Gutmann retired his professorship in 1973 and began to reassess his body of work, sorting through boxes of negatives and making new prints of selected examples from the 1930s. It was a well-timed exercise: not only did Gutmann’s images satisfy a growing historical appetite for Depression-era photography, they also seemed compatible with certain kinds of experimental photography then emerging in the contemporary art scene. Before his death in 1998, Gutmann had seen his work featured in gallery and museum exhibitions, catalogues, and monographs.
By bequeathing his rich archive of nearly 5000 modern photographic prints, negatives, tearsheets, letters, and some drawings and early art prints to the CCP, John Gutmann has left us with the task of pursuing the rich knots, braids, tangles and threads in his complex life and work that unfolded over a most tumultuous and provocative century of modernity » ccp-emuseum.
Jacques Pugin- Ombres et lumière (Shadows and Light) 1983
Josef Ehm- Female Nude Behind Lace, 1946
Judy Dater – Solarized Nude, 1966
» John De Mirjian The Broadway glamour photographer’s short but brilliant heyday lasted six years, from 1922 until his death in a speeding roadster containing a mysterious woman in 1928. An extravagant personality given to gambling and womanizing, De Mirjian brooked no criticism of his taste or resistance to his desire, throwing temper tantrums during photo shoots if sitters failed to follow his directions.
In February 1927, Olga, his wife of a little over one year, sued for divorce, citing repeated physical abuse and being forced to labor at her husband’s studio round the clock. In her court testimony she revealed that the photographer cleared 25K$ annually, making his one of the most lucrative studios in the city. One reason for his financial success was his arrangement with Earl Carroll, impresario of ‘The Vanities,’ to photograph publicity for his revue, a show that pushed the envelope in the theatrical display of female flesh.
In 1925 De Mirjian became a photographic celebrity when newspapers covered his trial in which actress Louise Brooks sued to stop his distribution of risque photos taken of her in 1923 ( See these photography on the site Here). Brooks in the court claimed that a nude shoot was the publicity price every girl new to Broadway must pay. De Mirjian testified, ‘Have I not photographed a thousand others wearing maybe a shoe, maybe a hat, maybe a shawl. . . and not only the girls of the shows but the women of society as well.’
The bulk of De Mijian’s risque photography appeared on two magazines of the mid-1920s: ART LOVERS and ARTISTS AND MODELS. Modeled on Edwin Bower Hesser’s successful ARTS MONTHLY PICTORIAL begun in 1922, these soft paper monthlies featured shots of semi-nude showgirls in artistic poses.
In 1925 De Mirjian was supplying imagery for both magazines. It is interesting to observe that the Schubert Brothers, who sponsored the annual « Artists and Models » girlie revues on Broadway were rivals of Earl Carroll, De Mirjian’s principle employer. Yet their appreciation of De Mirjian’s mastery of drape shots and nudes overrode their disinclination to patronize an artist in the hire of a rival. Besides showgirls in drapes and society women in stylish dishabille, De Mirjian had a particular talent for ‘two-shots,’ portraits showing the interaction, usually romantic, of two persons. His career ended spectacularly on September 24, 1928, when his Peerless roadster careened off the Jerico turnpike, L. I., going 70 miles an hour. His passenger, a married actress, Mrs. Gloria Christy, survived and told authorities she was his half-sister. She was not.
John’s brother, Arto De Mirjian, who had assisted in the studio, took over the business. He kept it a going concern until 1950, surviving debt proceedings in the early 1930s and a merger with Nasib, the vaudeville and dance photographer shortly thereafter. Arto De Mirjian continued the studio’s documentation of Broadway productions and achievied in portraiture an expertise equal to that of his brother. He remained an active photographer in New York until about 1950 when he sold his archive to the Culver Service, moved to California, and set up a studio in the Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. »
Text by David S. Shields found on the marvelous dealer on Ebay grapefruitmoongallery
I beginning with two Photography of Arto de Mirjian
Studio de Mirjian -Photography by Arto de Mirjan (John de Mirjian’s brother)
Laszlo Willinger –« Semi Nude », 1930
Willy Elenbaas ne se destinait pas à un parcours dans l’art. Il a en effet débuté en 1928 comme comptable chez un négociant en céréales, c’est dire comme on est loin de ce que je vais vous présenter aujourd’hui. A cette époque, son salaire et temps libre , il le passe principalement dans la littérature et la lecture. Il aime André Gide, Kafka, et Karl Marx , Kurt Tucholsky.
Il perd son emploi au bout de 4 années et en temps que chômeur, il rejoint la Ligue de la jeunesse communiste et c’est ainsi, qu’il entre en contact avec le milieu artistique et intellectuel de l’époque et ce par le biais de Paul Schuitema et du collectif gauchiste des écrivains travailleurs » ‘Links Richten » , dont il deviendra un membre actif. Là il découvre les possibilités qu’offre la photographie comme « arme » dans la lutte de classe. Wally a donc commencé autour du documentaire social, relevant de ce qu’on appelle La nouvelle photographie. En 1937 Elenbaas représentée à l’exposition « photo 37 », l’une des principales manifestations photographiques d’avant-guerre. Mais c’est précisément à cette époque qu’ il se découvre de plus en plus comme un peintre.
Après la seconde guerre mondiale Elenbaas est reconnu pour ce qu’on nomme « art monumental » et ses applications graphiques sur les bâtiments. comme Ici , ou Ici , Ici, ici. Parfois ceux sont des peintures, parfois des mosaïques, il en réalisera tout au long de sa vie, sur des bâtiments publics, pour des particuliers, des hôtels….
Il poursuit parallèlement à cela son travail de photographe et ce notamment avec son épouse Esther Hartog. ils ont réalisé une série de photos de nus féminins , ce qui lui coûta son poste de professeur à l’académie. Depuis 1942 Les photos de Wally et Esther Elenbaas sont étroitement liées à leur vie personnelle.
Outre orientés mortes et portraits fixes légèrement surréaliste, le quartier était Katendrecht où il a vécu un sujet de prédilection.
*****Elenbaas-de Hartog Esther*****
lecture Wally Elenbaas -De honderd gezichten van Esther Hartog, ed° DuoDuo 2002 ( mais c’est en néerlandais, ceci dit vous y trouvez bon nombre de travail photographique ainsi que celui de sa femme Esther)