'A walk back in time': Monroe Gallery of Photography takes viewers back to classic Hollywood

March 11, 2024 | Source: Monroe Gallery of Photography

Via The Albuquerque Journal

March 11, 2024

By Kathaleen Roberts

Francis Ford Coppola directing Marlon Brando.

Jimmy Stewart working on “Harvey.”

James Dean taking a nap in his truck.

Santa Fe’s Monroe Gallery of Photography is taking viewers back to old movie glamour with photographs from classic Hollywood.

“We wanted to take a little break from some of our more serious exhibitions,” said Sidney Monroe, gallery co-owner. “And this being awards season with the Academy Awards coming up, there’s a great range of materials with the photographers we represent.”

The 45 images feature such Hollywood icons as Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Steven McQueen, Robert Redford, Rock Hudson, Audrey Hepburn and more. The photographs depict them both on and off the set and in studio portraits.

“It’ll be a little bit of a walk back in time,” Monroe said.

Steve Schapiro was the on-set photographer for “The Godfather” (1972).

black and white photograph of Marlon Brando and Francis Ford Coppola, “The Godfather”

Marlon Brando and Francis Ford Coppola, “The Godfather,” Steve Schapiro.
Courtesy of Monroe Gallery

“I remember him telling us they were collaborating,” Monroe said. “Coppola’s telling Brando where the camera’s going to come in. It’s an interesting behind-the-scenes moment with an actor and director.”

Photographer Richard Miller captured James Dean sleeping during a break in the filming of “Giant” (1956).

“He’s napping in his truck with his feet up in the window,” Monroe said. “That James Dean was killed shortly after contributed to that icon. (Miller’s) got another one of Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean taking a break.

black and white photograph of James Dean's cowboy boots in car window as he naps during filming on "Giant"
James Dean takes a break from filming “Giant,” Richard C. Miller, Texas.
Courtesy of Monroe Gallery

“It’s photography that creates images of these bigger than life characters,” he added.

In “Harvey” (1950), James Stewart played a man dubbed crazy due to his insistence that he has an invisible six foot-tall rabbit for a best friend. Life magazine’s Ida Wyman, best known for her images of New York street life, shot Stewart during the filming. Wyman was one of the early female photographers. The field was almost exclusively male when she started during the 1940s.

black and white photograph of actor James Stewart in profile on the set of the mobie "Harvey"

“She found a lot of work for Life in Los Angeles,” Monroe said.

Sonia Handelman Meyer’s striking 1948 image of the Paramount Theater encapsulates the glitz and glamour of the movies.

black and white 1948 photograph of The Paramount Theater marqee with well-dresses people walking by, New York

“We’ve got a beautiful photograph of the marquee.” Monroe said. “The movies (functioned) as an escape from hard times.”

Tony Vaccaro’s on-set shot of Federico Fellini directing 1960s “La Dolce Vita” reveals the old school cameras used in the production.

black and white photograph of directo Fellini giving instructions on beach set of "La Dolce Vita"
Fellini on the set of “La Dolce Vita,” Tony Vaccaro, Italy.
Courtesy of Monroe Gallery

“The director’s stepping in,” Monroe said. “To me, it looks like he’s telling the actress how to pose.”

black and white photograph of the cast of the 1960 movie "Oceans 11" around a pool table
Ocean’s Eleven” cast, Sid Avery/mptv images
Courtesy of Monroe Gallery

Sid Avery’s photograph of the 1960 “Ocean’s 11” cast features Joey Bishop, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Peter Lawford, among others.

“Now there’s been I don’t know how many remakes or new versions have been made,” Monroe said. “We actually had that picture in the gallery in New York when the first remake was being made. Julia Roberts came in and bought it as a gift for the director (Steven Soderbergh.)”


WHEN: Through April 14

WHERE: Monroe Gallery of Photography, 112 Don Gaspar Ave., Santa Fe

MORE INFO: monroegallery.com, 505-992-0800

Tags: Academy awards actors actresses glamour Hollywood Ida Wyman movies Oscars photography Sonia Handelman Meyer