MLLE POLAIRE: FRENCH SINGER AND ACTRESS (PHOTOS BY REULINGER & NADAR)

polaire-2Photo 1

polaire 2020-05-01_075606  PHOTO 2

polaire2 2020-05-01_075728 PHOTO 2 (CLOSE-UP)

Mlle Polaire is actually the stage name used by French singer and actress Emilie Marie Bouchaud (1874-1939). Polaire was born in Algiers, Algeria and began her theatrical career as a cafe singer at the young age of 15. She moved to France two years later and ad0pted the stage name Polaire and became a music hall singer. In 1895, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec drew a sketch of her which appeared in the satirical magazine Le Rire. In 1900 her portrait was painted by Leonetto Cappiello and her popularity rose even more. She began acting in Paris in 1902 and became a major celebrity star. She was thought to be a gifted comedic actress but was also very well known for her beauty. She was famous for her tiny, corsetted waist. She was five feet and three inches tall. She lavishly overdressed in furs and dazzling jewels. In 1911 she appeared in her first silent film role and later appeared in six films of director Maurice Tourneur in 1912 and 1913. She then returned to the stage and toured the United States and England. She later made a reappearance in films, performing in ten (some were talkies). She died at age 65 and was buried in France. This cabinet card photograph (Photo 1) was taken in Paris, France at the studio of Reutlinger. Charles Reutlinger (1816-1860) was a French photographer whose studio operated between 1850-1937 in Paris, France. Among his subjects were many celebrities including the prettiest ladies of Paris. To view other photographs by Reutlinger, click on the category “Photographer: Reutlinger”.                                                       The second photo of Miss Polaire is featured in this vintage real photo postcard (Photo 2). She looks beautiful in this image. She is sitting cross-legged and wearing dark clothing, boots, and a large bow. Examining the print of the front of the card provides some interesting information.  We learn that the photographer of this image is the celebrated and talented Paul Nadar (1856-1939).He was a French photographer. He learned photography by his father, Felix Nadar, also a talented portraitist. Paul eventually ran his father’s studio. The establishment catered to a affluent clientele and was very successful. In 1890 he began shooting photographs from a hot air balloon. The press referred to him as “The Fearless Paul Nadar”. Nadar also photographed sites in Europe and Ssia along the ancient silk route. Some consider his work from that trip to be the first incidence of “photo-reportage”. In 1893 he became an agent in France for Eastman Kodak. The word “Eclair” appears in the bottom right hand corner of the photo. The Eclair Company was a movie production company established in 1907 and headquartered in Paris. The company produced many silent shorts in France beginning in 1908 and it’s American division produced films from 1911 through 1914. Included in their productions was one of the first film version of  “Robin Hood”.  In the top left hand corner of the photograph is the word “Bouffes”. The “Theatre des Bouffes-Parisiens” is a theatre located in Paris and founded in 1855. It was the location of the production that Miss Polaire was appearing in when she posed for this photograph. The name of the production can be seen in the bottom border of the card, “Claudine a l’Ecole”. The translated title of the play is “Claudine at School”. The story is from a 1900 novel by the French writer, Colette. It is a tale about a 15 year-old girl and her brazen conflicts with the headmistress and fellow students in her school. This vintage postcard has a great deal of back story. It is in excellent condition (see scans).

Buy this Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the US) #3062

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Buy this Vintage Postcard (includes International shipping outside the US) 3076

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polaire 3 2020-05-01_075923 PHOTO 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

BERTHE BADY : FRENCH STAGE ACTRESS AND ONE OF THE LEADERS OF THE SYMBOLISM MOVEMENT

This vintage real photo postcard features beautiful actress, Berthe Bady (1872-1921). She was born in Belgium but her nationality was French. Berthe Bady attended the Brussels Conservatory and was active on the stage between 1893 and 1913. She was a companion to both Lugne-Poe and Felix-Henri Bataille. Lugne-Poe was a French actor, theatrical director, and scenic designer. He and Bady were involved in symbolist movement of the arts. Bataille was a French dramatist and poet. A brief explanation of symbolism seems to be merited. In theatre, symbolism is a way to bring a greater meaning to something than is apparent at face value. The use of color, characters, movement, props and costumes are all methods of presenting symbolism. In 1897 Bady was the subject of a portrait by Toulouse Lautrec and her death was the subject of a poem by a leading French poet, Louis Aragon. In addition, playwright Fernand Crommelynck dedicated a play to her. Wikipedia credits her with sixteen “notable” play appearances between 1893 and 1913. She appeared in Ibsen’s “The Master Builder” on an international tour. The tour took her to London, Brussels, Amsterdam, Milan, and additional cities. In 1918 she appeared in her one and only film, “Ecce Homo”. This photo of Miss Bady was taken by the studio of Boyer & Bert. Paul Boyer (1861-1908) operated his studio in Paris. He was very talented and won many awards. He produced many portraits of theater performers as well as other celebrities. This postcard was published by F. C. & C. (Frederick Charles Cooper. The firm was located in Eastbourne, England. It was published circa 1905.This portrait postcard is in very good condition (see scans).

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$27.50

Buy this Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes International shipping outside the US) #2874

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