TRUUS VAN AALTEN: PRETTY, SPUNKY, AND FUNNY DUTCH/GERMAN ACTRESS

tua & dog POSTCARD 1

tua & dog 1 POSTCARD 1 (CLOSE-UP)

 

trus 2 POSTCARD 2

trus 2 1 POSTCARD 2 (CLOSE-UP)

The top vintage real photo postcard features Dutch actress, Truus van Aalten (1910-1999). She appeared in many German films in the 1920’s and 1930’s. She is flashing a wonderful smile as she holds a cute little dog. Truus worked as a milliner after finishing school and then worked as a salesgirl in a clothing store in Amsterdam. What she really wanted to do, was to become a movie actress. Unfortunately, at the time,  the movie industry was not producing many films in the Netherlands. In 1896, Truus entered a beauty contest sponsored by a Dutch magazine. The winner of this contest would be given the opportunity to audition for a film role. Truus was selected and joined about two hundred other women in Berlin to try out for the film part. She excelled on the screen test and won the role. The movie was being produced by Ufa, a German film company. The cast of the film included Betty Balfour and Willy Fritsch. Three photos of Miss Balfour can be found in the Cabinet Card Gallery by searching for “Balfour”. The name of Truus’s first movie was “A Sister of Six” (1926). Keep in mind, Truus had no training or experience as an actress. Even though Truu’s command of the German language was weak, Ufa offered her a contract and promised to train her and offer her opportunities in other films. The Ufa executives appreciated her sparkly and funny personality as well as her photogenic appearance. Truus’s father signed the contract and she moved to Berlin. The celebrated actress Olga Tschechowa took Truus under her wing and became her unofficial mentor and mother figure in the film industry. Olga nicknamed the young actress “Trulala”. Truus second film appearance was in “His Late Excellency” (1927). This movie included Willy Fritsch and Olga Tschechowa among it’s stars. Truus appeared in five movies that were released in 1928. She was certainly a busy actress. As Truus started to appear in more and more silent films, it became clear that she was talented; pretty, spunky, and funny. Truus’s greatest talent was seen in her comedic roles. She slowly became a fan favorite. She was the subject of interviews and photos in movie magazines. She also got work appearing in advertisements.  Truus had “a look” of her own. She was described in one article as having a “mixture of boyish yet feminine energy”. Her bobbed hair and her uninhibited style was similar to actress Colleen Moore. Truus made a successful transition into “talkies”, despite her Dutch accent. By 1930, she was a very well known actress. Her photograph appeared in many postcards and tobacco cards. As Nazism rose in Germany, members of the film industry felt extremely vulnerable. Her film appearances became less frequent, partially because the parts written for females, during the Hitler era,  were not particularly desirable to Truus. In 1934, she starred in her only film in Dutch and she was well received. Her next film wasn’t until 1939 and it turned out to be her final film appearance. In 1940, she returned to live in German occupied Netherlands. She was offered movie roles there, but refused them, because they were propaganda films. After the war, there was little activity in film production in Germany or Netherlands. Finding roles in English or American movies was unsuccessful. In 1954, Truus established a successful importing and exporting business in the Netherlands. The IMDb credits Truus with 28 film appearances from 1926 to 1939. The YouTube video below demonstrates just how cute and engaging Truus was as an actress. She was incredibly adorable.                                                                                                        Postcard  1 was published by Ross Verlag. The postcard is part of a series (no. 4184/1). Miss van Aalten’s portrait was taken by photographer Alex Binder, who operated a studio in Berlin. He was one of Berlin’s premier photographers and photographed many stars of the stage and film. This postcard is in excellent condition (see scans).                                       Postcard 2 was also published by Ross Verlag. The card is part of a series (no. 3884/1). The portrait was taken by photographer Hanni Schwarz of Berlin. Schwarz was a German female photographer and her work was praised in “American Photography” (1909). She was a well known professional photographer in Germany during the early 1900’s. Before becoming a photographer, she was a teacher at her father’s school in Basel. In 1904 , she and Anna Walter took over the photo studio of Johannes Hulsen in Berlin. In 1908, she and Wilhelm von Gloeden presented nude photographs at an exhibit in Berlin. Sometime around 1909 she ran her studio with photographer Marie Luise Schmidt. During the Brussels World’s Fair in 1910, Schwarz exhibited nudes In 1914, she began working with color photography. In 1919 the studio’s name only included Miss Schwarz, and she was reported to specialize in portrait and dance photography. The last known year of Schwarz’s work was 1930. This vintage postcard is in excellent condition (see scans).

Buy this original Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the US) #2610 (Postcard 1)

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$31.50

Buy this original Real Photo Postcard (includes international shipping outside the US) #2610 (Postcard 1)

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$39.50

 

Buy this original Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the US) #2611 (Postcard 2)

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$28.00

Buy this original Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes international shipping outside the US) #2611 (Postcard 2)

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tua & dog 2                           Postcard 1 

trus 2 2 POSTCARD 2                                                                      

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ELISABETH PINAJEFF: EUROPEAN ACTRESS, ARTIST, AND PART OF THE “BALLETS ROSES SCANDAL”

This vintage real photo postcard features German actress Elisabeth Pinajeff (1900-1995). In the 1920’s and 1930’s she starred in French and German films. Her first sound film was in 1929. The actress was born in Russia. Her father was an architect and her mother was a countess. In the 1910’s Pinajeff studied drama in the Ukraine. When she was 19 years old she married an engineer and his career required the couple to move to Germany. In 1929, Pinajeff met Austrian photographer, Alex Binder. Binder will be a familiar name to those that follow the cabinet card gallery. Many of his beautiful postcard portraits of theater stars can be found in the gallery (you can see his photos by placing his name, “Binder”, in the search box).  Binder had the largest photo studio in Europe during the 1920’s. Pinajeff modeled for Binder and later, married him. The couple lived in Paris. There is some debate about the years that they were together.The IMDb reports that Pinajeff appeared in 35 films between 1922 and 1938. After appearing in a bit part in a 1938 film about Rasputin, she retired from acting and focused on her painting. In 1950, Pinajeff became a friend of Andre Le Troquer, a “very connected” lawyer and politician. The couple surrounded themselves with political, artistic, and intellectual leaders.   In 1959, she was involved in a scandal known as the “Ballets Roses Scandal”. She was one of more than twenty people enmeshed in the scandal. She was accused of organizing erotic ballets with underaged girls for an “elite” audience. Some prospective show biz mother’s had consented to their daughters participation in this ballet with hopes that it would help launch their performance career.  Although Pinajeff was not convicted. Miss Pinajeff had artistic talent. She painted a number of famous personalities including the British Queen. She successfully exhibited a number of her paintings. This postcard is somewhat risque in that the photograph shows Miss Pinajeff’s bare back. The actress was a very pretty woman and had an engaging smile. This postcard was published by Russ Verlag and is part of a series (no. 2060/1). The photographer was the aforementioned Alex Binder and the photo was taken in Berlin.