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Stellar by Starlight

Stellar by Starlight

Artist: Anne Noggle (American, 1922 - 2005)
Subject Matter: James Holbrook (American, born 1951)
Subject Matter: Anne Noggle (American, 1922 - 2005)
Date: 1986
Medium: gelatin silver print
Dimensions:
Support (Each Print): 8 3/4 × 7 in. (22.2 × 17.8 cm)
Classification: Photograph
Credit Line: Gift of Jim Holbrook, 2017
Keywords and Associated Locations:
Object number: 2017.7.2a-c
Description
Wearing her birthday suit, a tiara, and a pair of eyeglasses, the artist is seen here ascending resplendently from her backyard hot tub, surrounded by an appreciative audience of young men. Noggle sometimes described her photographs as chronicling “the saga of the fallen flesh,” but the expression on her face tells us her lust for life remains undiminished in the face of fading eyesight, an expanding waistline, and other indignities of age.
The photograph was made in a hot tub in Noggle’s back yard in Albuquerque. Jim Holbrook, the donor, worked with Noggle to create this photograph and makes an appearance in it as the male figure at the right of the picture. Holbrook was Noggle’s studio assistant for a time as well as a close friend. The title of the triptych refers to the popular 1944 song “Stella by Starlight.” Noggle writes about this image: “I see my ideas as a blend of imagination and humor with underlying humanistic meaning. In “Stellar by Starlight” I had been reading a book, “The Hero Within,” addressed specifically to women, and the ideas came of an older woman, mysterious, joyful, and powerful – a mythological figure being adored by mankind. I couldn’t have done it without the humorous touches.” (quoted in the exhibition catalog “Ann Noggle,”Photographers’ Gallery, London, 1988).
Not on view
In Collection(s)