George Hurrell's Hollywood: Glamour Portraits 1925-1992

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George Hurrell (1904–1992) was the creator of the Hollywood glamour portrait, the maverick artist who captured movie stars of the most exalted era in Hollywood history with bold contrast and seductive poses. This lavishly illustrated book spans Hurrell’s entire career, from his beginnings as a society photographer to his finale as the celebrity photographer who was himself a celebrity, and a living legend.

From 1929 to 1944 Hurrell was the “Rembrandt of Hollywood,” creating ...

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George Hurrell's Hollywood: Glamour Portraits 1925-1992

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George Hurrell (1904–1992) was the creator of the Hollywood glamour portrait, the maverick artist who captured movie stars of the most exalted era in Hollywood history with bold contrast and seductive poses. This lavishly illustrated book spans Hurrell’s entire career, from his beginnings as a society photographer to his finale as the celebrity photographer who was himself a celebrity, and a living legend.

From 1929 to 1944 Hurrell was the “Rembrandt of Hollywood,” creating portraits of Marlene Dietrich, Norma Shearer, Bette Davis, Carole Lombard, and Joan Crawford that were a blend of the ethereal and the erotic. His photos of Jane Russell sulking in a haystack made the unknown girl a star—without a film credit to her name. He immortalized leading males stars of the day from the Barrymores to Clark Gable and Gary Cooper. Latter photo shoots magnified the glamour of the likes of Warren Beatty and Sharon Stone.

Through newly acquired photos and in-depth research, photographer and historian Mark A. Vieira, author of Hurrell’s Hollywood Portraits, offers not only a wealth of new images but a compelling sequel to the story presented in his earlier book on Hurrell. Hurrell was himself a star—rich, famous, successful. Then, at the height of his career, he suffered a vertiginous fall from grace. George Hurrell’s Hollywood recounts, for the first time anywhere, Hurrell’s rise from the ashes—how movie-still collectors and art dealers pulled the elderly artist into a nefarious world of theft and fraud; how his undiminished powers gave him a second career; and how his mercurial nature nearly destroyed it.

The photographs that motivate this tale are luminous, powerful, and timeless. This book showcases more than four hundred, most of which have not been published since they were created. George Hurrell’s Hollywood is the ultimate work on this trailblazing artist, a fabulous montage of fact and anecdote, light and shadow.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

George Hurrell (1904-1992), "the Rembrandt of Hollywood glamour photography," began his long career in the late twenties and early thirties, snapping pictures of Laguna Beach friends and starlets. Eventually, his credits would include striking portraits of Mae West, Carole Lombard, Jean Harlow, Gary Cooper, Joan Crawford, Errol Flynn, Humphrey Bogart, Fred Astaire, Veronica Lake, Natalie Wood, Bette Midler, John Travolta, Diana Ross, Warren Beatty and Farrah Fawcett. This coffee-table pictorial contains a foreword by Hurrell's final studio subject, Sharon Stone. An instant collectible.

The New York Times Book Review - Luc Sante
[Hurrell] could apparently do anything with light, and he used it to conjure mystery, sex and glamour around people who might have otherwise looked like anybody waiting for a bus…The book, along with its useful text, presents rapture upon rapture: Marlene Dietrich, Anna May Wong, Myrna Loy, Jean Harlow, Clark Gable, all of them as if projected upon the night sky and visible for thousands of miles.
From the Publisher

Years ago, writer-photographer Mark A. Vieira wrote and compiled a handsome book called Hurrell’s Hollywood Portraits.This enormous and elegant volume supersedes it, not only in the quantity and quality of photographs it presents, but in Vieira’s candid text, which expands on his earlier work and delves into the second part of Hurrell’s life... I think it’s fair to refer to this exquisite tome as definitive.
- Leonard Maltin

“A stunning collection of Hollywood portraits by George Hurrell, accompanied by an exploration of his life and career.”
- Shelf Awareness

Library Journal
Light and shadow; goddesses of the silver screen; Jean Harlow's white hair, white skin, white dress on a polar bear rug; Joan Crawford's perfect angles; Bette Davis's eyes: images of the Golden Era of Hollywood, long ingrained in American culture and memory. The master behind some of the most iconic photographic celebrity studies was George Hurrell, who started off in a small studio in Los Angeles in the 1920s, whose career lasted—with the usual ups and downs—until his death in 1992 and whose works are now valuable, sought-after collectibles. Photographer and writer Vieira (Sin in Soft Focus: Pre-Code Hollywood; Irving Thalberg: Boy Wonder to Producer Prince) intertwines the twists and turns of Hurrell's life with hundreds of images of his best work, some published here for the first time. The author, who penned a previous work on Hurrell (Hurrell's Hollywood Portraits), takes a second look at a fascinating subject and, once again, writes a compelling, well-researched narrative that is as absorbing as the pictures that accompany it. VERDICT This beautiful coffee-table book will appeal to anyone interested in the art of photography, the film industry, glamour portraiture, and Hollywood history.—Teri Shiel, Univ. of Connecticut Health Ctr. Lib., Farmington
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762450398
  • Publisher: Running Press Book Publishers
  • Publication date: 11/12/2013
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 173,313
  • Product dimensions: 10.40 (w) x 12.20 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark A. Vieira is a writer, historian, and photographer with over forty years of experience working in Hollywood. He makes portraits using the George Hurrell technique. Mark has lectured at USC, UCLA, Lincoln Center, Universal Studios, the Hollywood Heritage Museum, and the Palm Springs Film Festival. He has appeared in documentaries such as TCM’s Moguls and Movie Stars and Playboy’s Sex at 24 Frames Per Second. Mark is also the author of several books, including The Making of Some Like It Hot (with Tony Curtis), Greta Garbo: A Cinematic Legacy, and Sin in Soft Focus: Pre-Code Hollywood.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 7, 2014

    The quintessential book on Hurrell.

    The author Mark Vieira has written other books on Hurrell as he lays out in the introduction to the book. But this includes new details uncovered in recent years. If you are a fan of the work of Hurrell, being a photographer, or a fan of the stars of that era, and the stunning iconic images that were created for them, this is the essential book to get. The book "Hurrell, The Kobal Collection" has a number of Hurrell's most iconic images as well, but this book is loaded with much of Hurrell's best works. And much insight to the man and his process, including his relationship with the famous clients he catered to. I own a number of other books on both Hurrell, and by the author Marl Vieira. In my opinion, this is the best of both.
    Of note too, is that this book's many images are printed to a absolutely fantastic quality level. Many books you find on Classic Hollywood images have a fairly low standard of print quality. These all look stunning. Arguably, worthy of framing.

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