Little Fugitive and Morris Engel photos in new exhibit about Coney Island at the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT
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.
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
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.”
Tennessee Williams on the set of A Streetcar Named Desire, New York City, 1950
Vanity Fair featured a Ruth Orkin photograph of Comden and Green at the original rehearsals of On the Town
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.
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.
RUTH ORKIN + MORRIS ENGEL
Till August 3, 2014
Tuesday – Sunday 10-20 (closed on Mondays)
Tickets | full € 6; reduced € 4.50; € 2 schools
Infoline: +39 0245462411
Photograph of Charles James by Ruth Orkin in exhibition catalog for current exhibit at The Metropolitan Museum thru 8/10/14
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.
Ruth Orkin and Morris Engel exhibit at the Comune Di Venezia, Centro Culturale Candiani, Venice, Italy
RUTH ORKIN + MORRIS ENGEL
Dalla fotografia alla cinematografia
a cura di
Centro Culturale Candiani
A 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.