PINA MENICHELLI – ITALIAN SILENT FILM STAR RADIATING “DECADENT EROTICISM”

menchelli This vintage real photo postcard is another member of the Cabinet Card Gallery’s collection of international silent film stars. The beautiful actress featured on this postcard is Italian silent film star Pina Menichelli (1890-1984). She began her career in theater and in a number of small film roles. When she appeared in the lead role of “The Fire” (1916), she became elevated to stardom. For the next nine years, Menichelli appeared in many films and became a global star. She frequently appeared in roles where she played the role of a diva. She also showcased her, what wikipedia calls, her “decadent eroticism”. She retired in 1924 at the ripe old age of 34. Menichelli was born in Sicily to parents who were both touring theater actors. Her three siblings also became actors. She began acting as a child. Her theater travels took her to Argentina in 1908 and she married and relocated there. She returned to Italy in 1912 and acted in 35 films between 1913 and 1915. In 1918, one of her films was banned from theaters by Italian censors because Menichelli was “too fascinating” in the film. The IMDb website credits her with 62 film appearances between 1913 and 1925. A YouTube video biography of Miss Menichelli can be seen below. This postcard was published by Alberto Traldi of Milan, Italy. He was a publisher there beginning 1902, and according to one source, he ended his Milan business in 1918. This postcard was part of a series (no. 408). After World War II he returned to publishing postcards, including pin-up and cinema postcards. This vintage postcard portrait is in very good condition (see scans).

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Published in: on February 8, 2019 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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DANCE HALL GIRL IN KINGS CROSS, ENGLAND

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dancehallgirl1 I wish I knew more about this young lady. She has an infectious smile. Her dress is frilly and has rows of lace. Judging by her attire, my guess is that she is a “dancehall girl” or actress. Perhaps a viewer of this vintage old photo postcard has another opinion as to the story behind this image. Please share via leaving a comment. Some might consider this photo a bit risque. The woman seen in this image is wearing a very short dress for her era. An ink stamp on the reverse of the postcard reveals that this photograph was taken at the Avery studio. We only know that the studio was located on King’s Cross Road. King’s Cross is an area located in Central London. It may follow that Avery’s studio was located in London.

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RISQUE PORTRAIT OF A DANCER FROM THE PARIS FEMALE REVUE (GEORGIGUST)

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This vintage real photo postcard features one half of the dance partners from the “Duo Georgigust”. The pair were a popular dance couple during the 1910’s. Judging by the dancer’s tight clothing and revealing top, there must have been a sexual tone to her dance routine. This is a relatively risque photograph for it’s time.  The reverse of this postcard is an advertisement for Georgigust’s act. Georgigust is described as a “modern duo” and promises that they will perform 15 transformations (different dances?, different acts?) and a “new number” in a wonderful bright decor. This postcard is an advertisement for the “Paris Female Revue”. The photo postcard below, shows the duo reunited and dancing together. The postcard seen above, featuring just the female dancer, is in very good condition (see scans).

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2duo_georgigust1 Georgigust as a Duo (Not for Sale)

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Published in: on January 18, 2019 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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A GROUP OF PROSTITUTES IN CASABLANCA, MOROCCO

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prostitutes 1 This vintage real photo postcard features a group of six prostitutes posing for their portrait in Casablanca, Morocco. They are gathered around a table. Atop the table is a tray of glasses and what looks to be, a silver tea pot. The women are likely waiting to be selected by the next visitor to their brothel. The caption below the photograph roughly translates from French to “Morocco- The neighborhood reserve of Casablanca- an original tea”. The photographer of this photo is Marcelin Flandrin (1889-1957). Flandrin moved to Morocco in 1901 and volunteered for the military in 1912. He served as an Army photographer. Around this time, Morocco came under French rule. He corroborated with the French government and tourist boards. He was very involved with the French Protectorate government. Flandrin was criticized by some Moroccans for reinforcing “Orientalist” stereotypes . During the Rif War (Spain vs. Berber tribes), he published a number of reports. During World War I he served in the Air Force as an air observer, taking aerial photos of fighting. After the war he moved to Casablanca and went to work taking many photographs between 1921 and 1930. He published many photo books about Morocco. Flandrin was also an important postcard publisher in Morocco.

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Published in: on January 2, 2019 at 12:00 pm  Comments (3)  
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SEXUALLY CHARGED AND SENSUAL PORTRAIT OF A COUPLE IN LOVE

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This vintage real photo postcard can be described as sensual, or even, sexually charged. A pretty in woman in a short dress and dark stockings sits on the lap of a tuxedoed man, and the two stare intently into each others eyes. The photo begs the observer to question the relationship of this lovely couple. Are they lovers? Are they performers, perhaps dance partners? The man and woman in this photograph are beautifully dressed. However, there is one infraction that needs the attention of the fashion police. The gentleman’s light colored striped socks deserve a citation. Dark socks would be more appropriate. The photographer of this portrait postcard is Georg Schoppmeyer who operated a photography business in Leipzig-Schonefeld, Germany. This vintage postcard is in very good condition (see scans).

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Published in: on December 2, 2018 at 12:00 pm  Comments (3)  

TWO PROVOCATIVE PHOTOGRAPHS OF A WOMAN AT THE WATER’S EDGE (RISQUE RPPC)

POSTCARD 1

POSTCARD 1 (CLOSE-UP)

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POSTCARD 2

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POSTCARD 2 (CLOSE-UP)

These vintage real photo postcards are meant to be provocative. Risque photos must have boosted postcard seller’s sales. Although these images are rather tame by today’s standards, they are not so tame for their time (early 1900’s). The model photographed for these postcards is shapely and has a pleasant smile. The postcards were published by well known photographer, Alfred Noyer. They are part of a series (no. 2916).  The celebrated photographer supervised a large photo studio in Paris. The Noyer Studio operated from 1910 until the 1940’s. Many of his early postcards were reproductions of artworks. He also produced illustrated patriotic postcards during World War I. With the onset of the 1920’s he began producing postcards of children and women. Many of the postcards he produced of women were nudes or risque images. Some of his postcards list his name while others are simply marked “AN”.   These  postcards were produced in France. They have excellent clarity and are in very good condition (see scans).

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POSTCARD 1

bathing beauty 2

POSTCARD 2

Published in: on November 7, 2018 at 1:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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PORTRAIT OF A PRETTY 1950’S PIN-UP

This risque vintage photograph features a pretty model covered by an almost sheer veiled material. She is showing a great deal of bare skin. The young woman has a wonderful smile and sparkling eyes. This photograph is a pin-up from the 1950’s. Pin-ups are models that are photographed in a mass produced manner and sold in the general culture. They are meant for informal display, often pinned to a wall. The women that pose for pin-up photos may be glamour or fashion models, or even actresses.These pictures are sometimes referred to as “cheesecake photos”. This vintage Italian postcard is part of a series by Foto S.P.E.S., Roma, no. 2020. This postcard is in very good condition (see scans).

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Published in: on September 27, 2018 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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BEAUTIFUL ANGLO-GERMAN FILM ACTRESS LILLIAN HARVEY

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POSTCARD 1  (SOLD)

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                                                       POSTCARD 2 (SOLD)

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POSTCARD 3

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POSTCARD 4

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POSTCARD 5

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 POSTCARD 6

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harvey7 1 POSTCARD 7

 Real photo postcard #1 features Anglo-German actress and singer, Lillian Harvey (1906-1968). Her acting base was in Germany. Harvey was born in Hornsey, England to an English mother and a German father. During World War I her family was “trapped” in Magdeburg, Germany and Harvey was sent to live with her Swiss aunt. After the war she finished school in Berlin and than studied voice and dance at the Berlin State Opera. In 1924 she earned a role as a revue dancer in Vienna. This was followed by her first movie role which was in an Austrian film named “The Curse”. Thereafter, she starred in multiple silent films. Her first leading role was in “The Passion” (1925). Because of her voice training, Harvey was able to make the transition into “talkies”. She and actor Willy Fritsch became the “dream couple” of German movies. The pair acted together in eleven movies. In the 1930’s Harvey’s films appeared in both German and English and she became popular outside of Germany. She went to Hollywood and made four movies for the Fox Film Corporation (this postcard is from that period). In 1935, Harvey returned to Germany. She appeared in several more films and soon she was under the watchful eye of the Gestapo. Harvey had many Jewish friends in the film industry  and she was supportive of them. By 1939, Miss Harvey was forced to leave Germany, leaving behind valuable real estate holdings. She went to France where, in 1940, she made two movies for director Jean Boyer. In 1943 she was stripped of her German citizenship because she had performed for French troops. When southern France was occupied by the Nazis in 1942, she emigrated to the United States. During the war she did some theatre acting and also worked as a homeside volunteer nurse. After the war, Harvey relocated to Paris. She went on a world tour as a singer and in 1949 made appearances in West Germany. She spent her retirement on the French Riviera (Antibes) where she had a souvenir shop and raised snails for escargot. Harvey was married one time. Her four year marriage to theater director Hartvig Valeur-Larsen ended in divorce. Eventually she settled down with her female partner Else Pitty Wirth (1907-2007). Interestingly, the two women are buried together in Antibes. The imdb gives Harvey 54 acting credits between 1925 and 1940. Interestingly, Lillian Harvey’s name is mentioned in Quentin Tarantino’s film  “Inglorious Bastards” (2009). One of her songs is played on a phonograph and in addition one of the characters in the film mentions liking Harvey’s performance in a film and Joseph Goebbels becomes angry and insists her name never be mentioned in his presence. Click on the link below to hear the Lillian Harvey/Willy Fritsch duet used in the Tarantino movie. The 1936 song is titled “Ich Wollt Ich War Ein Huhn” (I Wish I Was A Chicken). Now would be a good time to discuss this postcard portrait of Miss Harvey. She is looking quite decorated in this photograph. She is wearing a garland of leaves in her hair, a very ornate necklace, a number of large bracelets, two giant rings, and a jeweled clasp on her dress near her cleavage. Note her very notable eye lashes. She is wearing a somewhat provocative dress and it is clear that the aim of the photographer is to emphasize Miss Harvey’s sexiness. The photographer and Miss Harvey succeeded in accomplishing this goal. The postcard was published by the German firm Ross Verlag and was part of a series (no. 8679/1). The postcard credits Fox films.                                                 SOLD                                                                                                                                                                          

The second postcard (postcard 2) features Miss Harvey in a risque costume. She is showing a “lot of leg” which is quite provocative for her time. It is likely that this image captures her in one of her film roles. The postcard was published by Argenta, which was located in Munich, Bavaria.                                                                                                                  SOLD        

The third postcard (postcard 3) presents Miss Harvey is a sexy pose. Note her dark gloves and large hoop earrings. The postcard was published by Ross Verlag and is part of a series (no. 4288/1). Note the advertising logo for the German film company UFA, located on the bottom right hand corner of the image.

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The fourth postcard (postcard 4) showcases Lillian Harvey’s beautiful smile. Miss Harvey’s not quite plunging neckline was clearly aimed to add a bit of a risque element to the photograph. This postcard was published by Ross Verlag (Berlin) and is part of a series (no. 1019/2). This portrait was taken by the talented photographer, Alex Binder. The photographer of this terrific image was Alexander Binder (1888-1929). He had the largest photo studio in Europe during the late 1920’s and the 1930’s. Many of his entertainment star portraits appear on Ross Verlag postards. It is thought that Binder was of Swiss origin. He was of the Jewish faith. He studied engineering but did not complete his studies. From 1908 to 1910 he studied photography at a school in Munich, Germany. After the completion of his photography studies, he went to Berlin and in 1913 opened his first photography studio. Before long, he became one of the premier photographers in Berlin.  He primarily focussed on fashion and celebrity photography. Since Berlin was the capital of the European film industry, Binder photographed all the stars of the European film industry including, Lilian Harvey, Conrad Veidt, and Lya De Putti. Many of his images were used in popular film portrait postcards. His photographs could be seen in postcards published by Ross Verlag and Photochemie. Binder died in 1929 but new photo cards bearing his signature continued to be published until 1937. 

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The fifth real photo postcard (postcard 5) features Miss Harvey wearing a bathing suit and sitting in a beach chair. Her shoes and stockings don’t seem very appropriate for the beach so it is a good thing that she is actually in a photographer’s studio and sitting in front of a beach backdrop. Obviously, the mission of the photographer was not to convince viewers that Miss Harvey was at the beach. The intent of photographer Alexander Binder was to present Lilian Harvey in a provocative and sexy pose. Mr. Binder certainly succeeded in accomplishing his goal. This photo postcard was published by Ross Verlag.

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Postcard #6 features a hand colored portrait of Miss Harvey published by Ross Verlag. The postcard is part of a series (no. 3543/4). She looks fantastic wearing her print dress and plaid long scarf. I’m not convinced the dress and scarf are matching, but her beauty overcomes any mismatch. As in Postcard #3, the logo for the German film company UFA, can be seen on the lower right hand corner of the image. This photo postcard is from the 1930’s and is in very good condition (see scans).

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Postcard #7 features Lillian Harvey leaning forward as she looks into a hanging bird cage. The photographer likely chose this pose to inject some sexuality into the image. The pose reveals a small amount of the actress’s cleavage. She is wearing a relatively low-cut dress for this time period. Print on the reverse of the postcard reveals that the photograph of Miss Harvey comes from the film “Congress Dances” (1931). Her costar in the film was Willy Fritsch. The postcard was published by Ross Verlag and is part of a series (no. 6738/1). On the right hand bottom corner of the postcard is the logo for “UFA”, a German film company. This postcard is in excellent condition.

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harvey-1                                                            POSTCARD 1

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                                                               POSTCARD 2
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                                                                    POSTCARD 5
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 POSTCARD 6
harvey7 2                                                                   POSTCARD 7

PRETTY WOMAN WITH OPEN PAJAMA TOP SMOKING A CIGARETTE

This vintage real photo postcard features a young woman wearing pajamas and slippers. Her pajama top is wide open exposing one of her breasts. She is smoking a cigarette. Her body language exudes confidence, perhaps even sassiness. This risque postcard was published by Leo of Pradot and manufactured by A. Lochard & Co. in Paris, France. This postcard is part of a series (no. 68). The Leo firm operated in the mid 1920’s and published many types of real photo postcards. They were especially noted for producing a large amount of nude postcards. Postcards such as this one were considered art during the time that they were published. This vintage postcard is in very good condition (see scans).

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Published in: on June 7, 2018 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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PRETTY WOMAN WEARING NEGLIGEE APPLIES LIPSTICK IN FRONT OF A MIRROR (FRENCH BOUDOIR POSTCARD)

This vintage real photo postcard features a pretty woman applying lipstick in front of a large mirror. The woman is wearing a negligee. It is uncertain whether she is getting ready to go to bed with a lover, or if she is just getting dressed and applying make-up upon rising. This risque photograph was taken by Julian Mandel (1872-1935). He was one of the most famous photographers of female nudes during the early twentieth century. He worked in Paris, France and his photographs became well known in the 1910’s through the 1930’s. His images were published by such firms as Alfred Noyer, Les Studios, P-C Paris, and the Neue Photographische Gesellschaft (NPG). Mandel produced many erotic postcards. He photographed his models indoors as well as outdoors. He often posed his models in classical poses and he was a master at utilizing toning and soft lighting. It is reported that Mandel participated in the German avant-garde (new age outdoor) movement. Mandel, as well as other photographers of nude models, produced photographs that were postcard sized, but never meant to be sent through the mail. In fact, it was illegal to post these nude images. These nude photographs tended to be privately collected. Although Mandel listed his name on his nude photographs, most photographers chose to remain anonymous. Experts compare Mandel’s work to that of photographer Julian Walery, another avant-garde artist who was known for his deco style nudes produced in the 1920’s. A photograph of Mandel can be seen below. This postcard was published by well known photographer Alfred Noyer. The celebrated photographer supervised a large photo studio in Paris. The Noyer Studio operated from 1910 until the 1940’s. Many of the postcards he produced of women were nudes or risque images. Some of his postcards list his name, while others are simply marked “AN”.