Photographs by Daniel Frasnay. Introduction by Philippe Garner.
Greybull Press, Los Angeles, 2005. 166 pp., 14 color illustrations and 85 duotones, 10x11½".
After WWII, Daniel Frasnay, a gypsy-born portrait photographer, found himself in the midst of a world where topless women dazzled in sequins, paillettes, feathers, fishnets, and little else. For 40 years Frasnay held the enviable position of official photographer at the famed Cabaret Lido, in Paris. (The story of the Lido began back in the 1920s when an artificial beach was built in the basement of a large town house at 78 Avenue des Champs Elysees-a mini-lakeside town much in vogue with Parisians in the years between the wars.) Frasnay, a gifted technician with, quite literally, a truly unique point of view was able to record a world that sadly has all but disappeared. Considered a Cartier-Bresson to the Paris garter set, Frasnay immersed himself in the world of Paris nightlife and photographed the backstage, rehearsals, revues, and stars that frequented not only the Lido but all the hot nightspots from Pigalle to the Left Bank and Champs-Elysees.Les Girls is a collection of his work from the early 1950s into the 70s-the heyday of Parisian cabaret, and captures not only the glamour and beauty of the era, but also the drama and energy as seen through the lens of a true insider.
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