Little Fugitive and Morris Engel photos in new exhibit about Coney Island at the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT

Posted by: on February 4, 2015

Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland 1861 – 2008
January 31, 2015 – May 31, 2015
The best show is the people themselves. –Reginald Marsh

Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland is the first major exhibition to use visual art as a lens to explore the lure that Coney Island exerted on American culture over a period of 150 years. An extraordinary array of artists viewed Coney Island as a microcosm of the American experience, from its beginnings as a watering hole for the wealthy, through its transformation into an entertainment mecca for the masses, to the closing of Astroland Amusement Park following decades of urban decline.

 litlefug    fugitive

Production Stills from Little Fugitive, 1953


Photos by Morris Engel, Coney Island, New York, 1938


Called “America’s playground,” Coney Island is a world-famous resort and national cultural symbol that has inspired music, literature, and films. This groundbreaking book is the first to look at the site’s enduring status as inspiration for artists throughout the ages, from its inception as an elite seaside resort in the mid-19th century, to its evolution into an entertainment mecca for the masses, with the eventual closing of its iconic amusement park, Astroland, in 2008 after decades of urban decline. How artists chose to portray Coney Island between 1861 and 2008 – in tableaux of wonder and menace, hope and despair, dreams and nightmares – mirrored the aspirations and disappointments of the era.

This dazzling catalogue highlights more than 200 images from Coney Island’s history, including paintings, drawings, photographs, prints, posters, film stills, architectural artifacts, and carousel animals. An extraordinary array of artists is represented, from George Bellows, William Merritt Chase, Reginald Marsh, and Joseph Stella to Diane Arbus, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Robert Frank, Red Grooms, Weegee, and Swoon. Essays by prominent scholars analyze Coney Island through its imagery and ephemera as both a place and an idea – one that reflected the collective soul of the nation.

Details: By Robin Jaffee Frank
published 2015, 304 pages, hardcover



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American Girl in Italy featured in The Guardian 1/31/15

Posted by: on February 4, 2015

American Girl in Italy, 1951 Copyright 1952, 1980 Ruth Orkin

American Girl in Italy, 1951
Copyright 1952, 1980 Ruth Orkin

American Girl in Italy is featured in an article about Ninalee Craig in the Guardian 1/31/15 titled “That’s me in the Picture.”

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Ruth Orkin photograph in new biography of Tennessee Williams

Posted by: on February 4, 2015

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Tennessee Williams on the set of A Streetcar Named Desire, New York City, 1950

Tennessee Williams.Book

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Vanity Fair featured a Ruth Orkin photograph of Comden and Green at the original rehearsals of On the Town

Posted by: on February 4, 2015

The November 2014 issue of Vanity Fair featured a Ruth Orkin photograph of Comden and Green at the original rehearsals in 1944 for ON THE TOWN.


Adolph Green, Oliver Smith (set designer), Paul Feigay (producer) and Betty Comden at ON THE TOWN rehearsal, New York, 1944.



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Morris Engel / Ruth Orkin OUTSIDE – New book published by Editions Carlotta Films

Posted by: on November 30, 2014

outside.1   Outside.2   outside.3   outside.4

A New Book Publication – For Immediate Release 11/20/14
 With LITTLE FUGITIVE, hailed by Francois Truffaut and rewarded at the Venice Film Festival in 1953,
the work of Morris Engel and Ruth Orkin was at the origin of a new style that revolutionized the history of cinema,
announcing the French New Wave and independent production in America. Featuring a rich and unpublished
iconography, this book presents keys to the photographic and cinematographic journey of these iconic figures.
Published by Editions Carlotta Films, Edited by Stefan Cornic,
introductions by Alain Bergala, Anne Morra (MoMA) and Mary Engel
200 pages, Hardcover 9″ x 12″ $50 – Published by Editions Carlotta Films
 To order book:
VARIETY – Daily Update – October 16, 2014 by John Hopewell
A second coffee table book features U.S. indie filmmaking couple Morris Engel and Ruth Orkin
whose 1953 “The Little Fugitive,” the story of a child growing up on Coney Island,
was a huge influence on the French Nouvelle Vague in its use of non-pros, naturalism and hand-held 35mm camera.
Coinciding with the re-release of “Little Fugitive,” this publication marks the first book ever on the
couple, also distinguished photographers, Vincent Paul-Boncour said.
Carlotta holds international rights to “The Little Fugitive” and Engel and Orkin’s
“Lovers and Lollipops,” and “Weddings and Babies.”


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Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel Exhibit at Fondazione Stelline

Posted by: on July 7, 2014


Engel.HarlemMerchantA photography exhibit of Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel’s photographs and films opened last month at the Fondazione Stelline in Milan, Italy. It runs from June 26 – August 3, 2014.

The exhibition was curated by Enrica Vigano of Admira Photography.

From June 26 to August 3, Stelline Foundation hosts a retrospective that compares two masters of photography and international cinema, Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel, partners in life and work. 60 photographic works in black/white and color, video documentaries – vibrant stories of their life and career – and documents present 30 years of passionate work in art, both in photography and cinema. In these two branches of art they achieved prestigious firsts: Ruth Orkin, with his most famous “American Girl in Italy” taken in Florence in 1951, that became part of the annals of the history of photography as the second best-selling poster in the world; on the other hand François Truffaut said that without the work of Engel the Nouvelle Vague would never have existed.

On show two important documentaries directed by Mary Engel: Ruth Orkin: Frames of Life (1995), premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1996, and Morris Engel: The Independent (2008), which was shown on Turner Movie Classics in April 2009.

Till August 3, 2014
Tuesday – Sunday 10-20 (closed on Mondays)
Tickets | full € 6; reduced € 4.50; € 2 schools
Infoline: +39 0245462411

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Photograph of Charles James by Ruth Orkin in exhibition catalog for current exhibit at The Metropolitan Museum thru 8/10/14

Posted by: on May 10, 2014


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In 1948 CORONET MAGAZINE featured a 16-page picture story on Charles James photographed by Ruth Orkin.  The photo on the 2nd page is Charles James with Austine Hearst, one of his most important clients and models.



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Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel exhibit at the Comune Di Venezia, Centro Culturale Candiani, Venice, Italy

Posted by: on May 1, 2014
ADMIRA vi invitano all’inaugurazione  dell’esposizione


Dalla fotografia alla  cinematografia

a cura di

Enrica Viganò

Centro Culturale  Candiani

Piazzale Candiani, 7 – Venezia  Mestre

4 aprile – 1 giugno  2014





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The Cardplayers included in “Greenwich Village Stories”

Posted by: on May 1, 2014

Greenwich Village StoriesA love letter to Greenwich Village, written by artists, writers, musicians, restaurateurs, and other neighborhood habitues who each share a favorite memory of this beloved place. The sixty stories in this collection of Village memories are exuberant, poignant, original, and vivid-perfectly capturing the essence of the Village.

Every corner of the Village is represented in the book: recollections of jazz clubs and existentialism on Bleecker Street, rock music at St. Mark’s Place, folk singers in Washington Square Park. There are stories of Hans Hofmann teaching modern art on 8th Street and Lotte Lenya performing in The Threepenny Opera on Christopher Street. Decades later, Brooke Shields muses on renovating a brownstone and finding history behind its walls; and Mario Batali lyrically describes a Sunday morning walk through the food markets of Bleecker Street. The stories are complemented by a wide range of photographs by iconic figures such as Allen Ginsberg, Rudy Burckhardt, Berenice Abbott, Saul Leiter, Ruth Orkin, and Weegee. Paintings depict elegant red-brick facades and raffish Hudson River piers, now restored; theater posters spotlight Karen Finley and John Leguizamo. This is a book for those who are already beguiled by the Village as well as those just discovering this fabled place.

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Posted by: on December 14, 2013


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