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Posts Tagged ‘Andre de Dienes’

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Ever since I read about this publication I’ve wanted it and as I was out shopping for presents for my daughters and grandchildren today, there it was, at a reduced price. My heart made I jump, I grabbed it quickly, it was the only one left in the shop.

I didn’t bother to get it wrapped because I wanted to start reading it at once and for the last couple of hours I’ve done just that.  Sitting in my best easy chair with a cup of Darjeeling first flush Tiger Hill (my best tea) at my side, Loreena Mc Kennitt’s “A Mediterranean Odyssey” on the player and the mobile phone off, reading about de Dienes first meeting with Norma Jean in 1945. Magic, pure magic.

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Anita Ekberg, nude, photo taken by Andre De Dienes in 1955

Image found at LostFoundAndEnvied

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In 1945, fashion photographer Andre de Dienes developed a relationship with an aspiring young model named Norma Jean Dougherty resulting in a brief engagement and a huge portfolio of stunning photographs which helped to launch her career as Marilyn Monroe.

Below is a small collection of interesting vintage pictures of Marilyn hanging out in the pumpkin patch, taken by Andre de Dienes in October 1945.

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Text and images from vintage.es

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Andre de Dienes was born in Transylvania, Romania in 1913, he left home at fifteen and travleled through Europe, before ending up in Tunisia, where he worked odd jobs, learned to paint, and bought his first camera. In 1933 de Dienes arrived in Paris. He made a living selling photographs to the communist newspaper La Humanite and the Associated Press until 1936, when the couturier Captain Molyneux encouraged him to become a fashion photographer. He came to America in 1938 as a young photographer with the help of Esquire Magazine. In New York he worked as a fashion photographer while photographing Harlem street life. He traveled throughout the country, fascinated by the grandeur of the western landscape and the Native American people, documenting their rich culture.

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In 1944 he moved to California where he photographed nudes in an outdoor setting, often incorporating his pioneering techniques of photomontage. Fascinated by the body builders and sun worshipers who congregated on Muscle Beach, he captured their exhibitionism and innocence. To support himself he freelanced for the studios and photographed Hollywood legends including Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando, Elizabeth Taylor, Henry Fonda, Fred Astaire, Ingrid Bergman, Ronald Reagan, Jane Russell, and Anita Ekberg.

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Text from “Staley Wise Gallery

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The photos and secret memoirs of Marilyn Monroe‘s first photographer and lifelong friend

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Fashion photographer Andre de Dienes‘s life was changed forever one day in 1945 when he met a lovely young aspiring model named Norma Jeane Dougherty. He instantly fell in love with her innocence and charm and the two were briefly engaged. They took many adventurous road trips together in those early years, de Dienes shooting Norma Jeane in every possible natural setting in his original, inspired style. He soon built up a huge portfolio of stunning photographs of the smiling brunette which helped to launch her model career and, a few years later, a film career that was to make her a legend.

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His entire relationship with the star, including many private moments shared only between the two, is detailed in de Dienes’s secret memoirs, which were discovered when Monroe fans ravaged his home after his death in 1988.

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The memoirs tell a beautiful story of love and friendship from the point of view of someone who knew Marilyn intimately; describing the transformation from Norma Jeane to Marilyn Monroe — the evolution of a sensitive, ambitious girl into a deeply troubled megastar — from an inside perspective, they shed light on a little-known side of Marilyn. From their trip to see Norma Jeane’s mother in a mental hospital to Marilyn’s visit to his home a few days before her death, de Dienes recounts all of the emotional moments they shared. The combination of de Dienes’s memoirs and an extensive selection of his Monroe photographs (which numbered in the thousands) makes for an unprecedented, personal exploration into the psychology, history, and iconography of the world’s favorite movie star.

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