GILDA DARTHY : SCANDALOUS FRENCH ACTRESS : RISQUE

This vintage real photo postcard features French actress, Gilda Darthy (1878-1952). She was an actress on the Paris stage. She was known for being fashionable and was the subject of many photo postcards and photographs. Her stage costumes were created by some of the most famous costumers of their time. She had striking red hair. She was a passenger on a 1910 flight from Algiers to Timbukto and her flying on the plane was used to publicize the New French air service making the flight. During World War I, Darthy was one of the French actresses employed to portray “La Patrie”, a symbol of France. She made her American debut in “The Ironmaster”. The New York Times (1916) reported on her performance and the review was very favorable.  The reviewer described Darthy as being among the most gifted and skillful actresses of the french theater. The wrtier added that “she has all the natural grace and technical skill” of the schooled actresses of the french theater. The reviewer also commented about Darthy’s appearance by stating she had “a moderate amount of gallic beauty”  besides her talent. Finally, the theatrical writer reported that Darthy had an extraordiary amout of emotional powers and a lovely voice. Darthy also appeared in the New York productions of Sapho (1917) and “La Rafale” (1917). In addition to being famous for her acting and fashion roles, Darthy was also a headliner in the area of noted scandals. The New York Times (1917) reported that actress, Irene Bordoni filed suit in the New York Supreme Court against her husband, actor Edgard Beekman, on the grounds of alleged misconduct with Darthy. Darthy was also sued for damages for alienating Boroni’s husband’s affections. Beekman was Darthy’s leading man in a theatrical production at the time of the affair. A similar situation occured with actress Cora Laparcerie and her husband Jacques Richepin. That particular conflict escalated to the point of physical violence between the two women. In 1929, Darthy won damages in a court case, after being injured in an automobile accident. The injuries caused her to have to cut her “trademark” long hair and damages were justifiable because she refused to “deceive the public by wearing a wig”. This vintage postcard portrait of Gilda Darthy was taken by Paul Boyer, the esteemed celebrity photographer. Boyer’s studio was located in Paris, France.  (SOLD)

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