George Hurrell (1904 - 1992)
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, George Hurrell originally studied painting, gradually embracing photography as an artistic medium. He settled in California in 1925 and won the praise and encouragement of Edward Steichen. He established a photography studio in Los Angeles, where he was introduced to – and photographed - actor Ramon Novarro, who recommended Hurrell to the actress Norma Shearer. He produced a suite of glamorous photos designed to refashion her image. As a result, Hurrell was made head of portrait photography at MGM by Shearer's husband, production chief Irving Thalberg. Hurrell left MGM in 1932, re-establishing and operating his studio until 1938. In the early 1940s, Hurrell became the portrait photographer at Warner Brothers. During his long career, he photographed virtually all of the leading screen artists of the era.. He died in Los Angeles.
Joan Crawford, from Letty Lynton, 1932
Silver gelatin print'ca. 1968. Image size 10-7/8” x 14”; sheet size 16” x 20”. Signed in ink by Hurrell in the lower margin. Studio portrait for the film Letty Lynton showing the famed actress displaying the low-keyed emotional restraint for which she was famous. Letty Lynton is generally remembered for the remarkable white organdy gown made for Ms. Crawford by the noted designer Adrian, which was knocked off by Macy's, selling about fifty thousand copies nationwide. Apart from a few clips, the film has been unavailable since the courts decided and later upheld a copyright infringement lawsuit in favor of the plaintiffs and against MGM in 1936. Fine.
Joan Crawford, 1932
Silver gelatin print, ca. 1981, printed under the supervision of George Hurrell. Image size 19-5/16” x 15-1/8”; sheet size 19-15/16” x 16”. Numbered III/XXIII and signed by Hurrell in the lower magin. Fine, in a very good black wooden gallery frame.
Ann Sheridan, 1939
Silver gelatin print, 1968; edition of 250. Image size 19-5/16” x 15-5/16”; sheet size 19-15/16” x 16-1/16”. Printed under the supervision of George Hurrell, numbered 176/250, and signed in ink by Hurrell in the lower margin. A beautiful image in fine condition.
James Cagney, 1935
Silver gelatin print, ca. 1981, printed under the supervision of George Hurrell. Image size 19-3/8” X 15¼”; sheet size 19-15/16” x 16”. Numbered III/XXIII and signed by Hurrell in the lower margin. Fine, in a very good black wooden gallery frame.