Hello there, Righty. Don't tell Lefty this, but you're my favorite.
Above is a Colortone Line lithograph entitled “Beautiful Gems,” which we guess is a double entendre, since the model's jewelry isn't really the most noticeable element of the photo. She's unknown to us, but is far too beautiful to have been unknown to the world. She was somebody famous, we're sure. But who? No idea. We also don't have the year on this. So basically, we know nothing. But we had to share it anyway. Recognize her? Let us know.
Nothing can dim the luster of precious things.
Remember the Technicolor lithographs we shared a while back that had acetate overlays? Today we have another. In the top version the model is wearing a cartoon nightie and in the version below that you see her in the altogether. These after-the-fact cover-ups rarely look good, but today they're collectible, which just goes to show how years and scarcity are a sort of temporal alchemy that turn lead into gold. Speaking of precious metals, the print is titled “Platinum Beauty.” As a bonus, below is a version of the litho with an advertising strip at top (where a business of some sort would insert a logo). The date on that one is 1962, but we aren't sure about the overlay versions above. The seller claims 1951 but we're highly doubtful of that. Also, we think acetate versions tended to come later than advertising versions, but we have no evidence to support that theory. It's just a feeling. In any case, you get three versions of a beautiful platinum haired model, so that makes it a good day, right?
She's the pause that refreshes.
This Technicolor lithograph shows Arline Hunter, who was a Playboy centerfold in August 1954 and an actress on television and in movies. Her first brush with show business was in the 1948 erotic reel Apple Knockers and the Coke. Yeah. That's a real title. And a literal one, too—the reel shows a topless Hunter suggestively playing with an apple and drinking a Coke. It's available for the moment on YouTube as an age restricted upload and you can watch it in all its grainy goodness there, or just get the gist from the photos below. If you think she looks a bit like Marilyn Monroe you aren't the only one. The resemblance helped propel Hunter to recognition, and in fact her Playboy appearance was what you might call a revisitation of Monroe's famous centerfold from the previous year, featuring similar poses and a similar red velvet background. The above image comes from Champion Line and dates from 1952.
Bad news: the dye job was expensive. Good news: she has the same hair color today for free.
An unidentified model appears above on two 1965 Technicolor lithographs, the first of which, from A. Fox Corp., is called “How Nice,” and the second of which, from KLM, is called “Silver Siren.” The model sports striking silver hair in both, and we've noticed this trend has gotten pretty big of late, so these serve as a reminder that, once again, your grandmother beat you to it.
So I found these awesome leopardskin drapes on sale. What do you think? Too much?
The incomparable Marilyn Monroe, wearing see-though lingerie, stars on the above Technicolor lithograph titled “Vivacious Marilyn.” The image was originally shot by acclaimed Hungarian lensman Laszlo Willinger in 1947. Most sources say 1949, but we can confirm 1947 because we've seen another frame from this leopard series used on a 1947 Sunoco calendar. However, the above lithograph wasn't printed until 1955, when the negative fell into the hands of the good people at A. Scheer Co. and they said, “She's sheer! We're Scheer! It's a match made in heaven!” A. Scheer made another print of one of Willinger's other famed Monroe images which we'll show you a bit later. In the meantime, we offer the bonus image of Monroe on the phone for no reason at all. You can see more lithos of Hollywood's greatest star wearing assorted bits of almost nothing here.
Mirror mirror on the wall, who’s the barest of them all?
This Technicolor lithograph is entitled “Golden Reflections” and features a model who looks familiar to us—she could be a burlesque dancer or popular centerfold, but we can’t place her. The only thing of which we’re sure is the copyright date—1959. Know who she is? Drop us a line.
Straight from the best part of the subconscious.
Today's Technicolor lithograph is a bit different than the others, featuring a border on three sides and a smaller image than typical. But what a nice image. It's titled “Dream Girl” and comes from the U.I. Co. of New York. We have no date, but we're guessing by the hairstyle and general model type that it's from 1955 or a bit earlier. We have no model ID.
If you're going to be a movie star you better look the part.
Above, a beautiful Technicolor lithograph of Hungarian actress Zsa Zsa Gabor clad in two of her favorite luxe accessories—fur and jewels. Gabor once said, “Don’t ever buy imitation furs, because that’s worse than death.” Times change, of course. The photo is entitled simply “Movie Star,” and she perfectly personifies the 1950's version of that concept here.
She's enough to make your head spin.
This Technicolor lithograph of a model in boldly checked pants stars Marilyn Waltz, who under that name was Playboy magazine's April 1955 centerfold, but also modeled as Margaret Scott. This print is the actual centerfold shot but slightly cropped. It's titled “A Sultry Miss” and appeared later than the magazine, we think. Probably around 1958.
This ain't exactly her first rodeo.
Since we brought up a buxom burlesque dancer yesterday, we thought a return to the subject was appropriate. Here you see a Technicolor lithograph of Betty Howard, who was aka Betty "Blue Eyes" Howard, but who also called herself The Girl Who Has Everything. And by everything she meant boobs—forty inches worth. Howard was a star by the late 1940s, and hit her stride during the 1950s, dancing all over the U.S. and in Cuba. This particular shot is entitled “Strictly from Vegas,” and we can only assume she was a major presence there at some point. You may remember Howard led off our collection of vintage burlesque dancers back in 2010. If you haven't seen it, or are perhaps up for a revisit, check it here. |
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
1987—Andy Warhol Dies
American pop artist Andy Warhol, whose creations have sold for as much as 100 million dollars, dies of cardiac arrhythmia following gallbladder surgery in New York City. Warhol, who already suffered lingering physical problems from a 1968 shooting, requested in his will for all but a tiny fraction of his considerable estate to go toward the creation of a foundation dedicated to the advancement of the visual arts.
1947—Edwin Land Unveils His New Camera
In New York City, scientist and inventor Edwin Land demonstrates the first instant camera, the Polaroid Land Camera, at a meeting of the Optical Society of America. The camera, which contains a special film that self-develops prints in a minute, goes on sale the next year to the public and is an immediate sensation.
1965—Malcolm X Is Assassinated
American minister and human rights activist Malcolm X is assassinated at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City by members of the Nation of Islam, who shotgun him in the chest and then shoot him sixteen additional times with handguns. Though three men are eventually convicted of the killing, two have always maintained their innocence, and all have since been paroled.
1935—Caroline Mikkelsen Reaches Antarctica
Norwegian explorer Caroline Mikkelsen, accompanying her husband Captain Klarius Mikkelsen on a maritime expedition, makes landfall at Vestfold Hills and becomes the first woman to set foot in Antarctica. Today, a mountain overlooking the southern extremity of Prydz Bay is named for her.
1972—Walter Winchell Dies
American newspaper and radio commentator Walter Winchell, who invented the gossip column while working at the New York Evening Graphic, dies of cancer. In his heyday from 1930 to the 1950s, his newspaper column was syndicated in over 2,000 newspapers worldwide, he was read by 50 million people a day, and his Sunday night radio broadcast was heard by another 20 million people.
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