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Article: Nicholas Ray

 
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DavidC



Joined: 02 Sep 2006
Posts: 7301
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2019 2:03 pm    Post subject: Article: Nicholas Ray Reply with quote

These 1920s apartments inspired one of the best noir films ever made


David
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 9795

PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2019 3:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Zwebell apartment buildings are highly prized, especially Andalusia, which is now a condo with units over a million dollars. The largest, with 3 bedrooms on 2 floors, which the Zwebells occupied, cost over $2M. (The one shown in the article for $849K is one of the 3 smallest units.) Most of the buildings are in good shape and command high rent. Villa Primavera, while it certainly is costly to rent, as everything in WeHo is, was never as inviting as the others. The apartments are small and very dark, and the courtyard has seen better days. The courtyard set for "In a Lonely Place" (hardly the best noir film) was loosely inspired by the Villa, while the interiors were a complete Hollywood fabrication.
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18665
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2019 12:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought it might be worthwhile to try to illustrate this subject---specifically, a bit of the settings for "In a Lonely Place." I took a few screen shots of images found online . . .

We start with a shot of Bogie, at the door of Gloria Grahame's dwelling, a set mentioned by Roderick. The carved door is one of several we see in the following stills.

(Sorry about the superimposed graphics; I couldn't get rid of them.)







Is there something a bit odd about this door ?





Anybody recognize the painting on the wall ? (For some reason, my mother had this reproduction on our wall, for a while.)





Another look at the painting . . .




An elliptical-arched fireplace opening---so Mission Revival !





More doors:





And the pièce de resistance: What could possibly explain the irregularities in this door ? A contest between studio carpenters, to see what they could put over on the director ?

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Rood



Joined: 30 Oct 2010
Posts: 1107
Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New book on Ray, by his daughter, Nicca ... on Librarything's monthly request list, free from the publisher:

Request it!
Request by Feb 24
On sale May 05


Ray By Ray: A Daughter's Take on the Legend of Nicholas Ray by Nicca Ray (Three Rooms Press)
Description: Nicholas Ray was cinema. The legendary director of such classic films as Rebel Without a Cause was an innovative force who dramatically changed the Hollywood landscape. He was also Nicca Ray’s dad, Nick.

After he disappeared from her life in 1964, Nicca began to imagine her father as a hero who would return and whisk her away from a life in LA where she never felt safe. However, the man who finally reappeared was not the legendary figure she dreamed of. Through his movies and letters along with her intimate interviews of family members and Hollywood icons, Nicca stitches together the seemingly disparate pieces of the real Nicholas Ray: A man so devoted to his craft he insisted on spending the last hours of his life surrounded by a film crew; a man who lost everything to drugs and gambling; an absentee father she longed to connect with.

Both well-researched and deeply personal, Ray by Ray: A Daughter's Take on the Legend of Nicholas Ray unravels the lives entangled in Nick’s, including those of Gloria Grahame, Dennis Hopper, Wim Wenders, and the Ray family itself. Nicca tracks her father’s whereabouts during the years he was missing from her life and works to reconcile his artistry with his persona. In discovering the truth about her father, she navigates her own path beyond the shadows cast by the Golden Age of Hollywood.

An essential new perspective on Nicholas Ray, with more than 50 photos and letters from the author's personal archive, Ray by Ray redefines this legendary figure through the eyes of a daughter searching for the truth about her father.

"Nicholas Ray invented the meme of teenage anguish. His daughter Nicca lived it. The first miracle is that she survived. The second is that she created this beautiful, heart-breaking book, in which she maps the intersecting arcs of her life and her father's, creating a dazzling geometry of self-creation and self-destruction." —Peter Trachtenberg, author, Another Insane Devotion

» Publisher information
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18665
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Goodness. And all I have is this photo of H H Harris's Birtcher house, with Ray's Hollywood Graham (or, correctly, Graham Hollywood).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham-Paige

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Stephen Cowdery



Joined: 11 Dec 2019
Posts: 5
Location: Minnesota

PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anybody recognize the painting on the wall ? (For some reason, my mother had this reproduction on our wall, for a while.)





Another look at the painting . . .




It is The Flower Carrier by Diego Rivera
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clydethecat



Joined: 24 May 2012
Posts: 122

PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18665
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 11:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks ! And thanks for the good image . . .

S
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Matt2



Joined: 30 Dec 2018
Posts: 193

PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2020 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A question about the Bircher House:

What is the history of dividing a wall of horizontal siding with regularly spaced vertical mullions? Is this a purely Japanese tradition? Is there any structural rationale, or is this purely decorative...reinforcing the grid?
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18665
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2020 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The other aspects of the Birtcher exterior.






The siding method you cite is found in one or two other Harris projects, I believe, but is not widely seen---quite the opposite.
My copy of Lisa Germany's Harris monograph has disappeared, so I cannot presently document that or show other examples.

S
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Matt2



Joined: 30 Dec 2018
Posts: 193

PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2020 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm unfamiliar with this house. Does it still exist?
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SDR



Joined: 17 Jun 2006
Posts: 18665
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes. Note the Wright/Schindler fireplace seating . . .

https://www.flickr.com/photos/michael_locke/29997684612 (Lautner and De Long houses, too)

https://monocle.com/magazine/issues/103/home-improvements/


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