From The Vault Of Art Shay: I Love LA!
(Legendary Chicago-based photographer Art Shay has taken photos of kings, queens, celebrities and the common man in a 60-year career. This week, Art recaps his recent visit to the City of Angels.)
California there I came! Right back where I had made a couple of starts at settling — first as a flyboy taking the wounded home from the Pacific, and then as a Life magazine bureau chief where I tangled with Earl Warren, who thought he was about to become the next vice president for someone who every one (with the exception of one tough guy named Harry Truman) thought was going to be the next President.
But this is now and Los Angeles' newest picture showplace, the DRKRM Gallery, had invited me and especially Erica DeGlopper, who does my print gathering, to open their new space with a retrospective. I had the pleasure of following the tough act of Ansel Adams in their last space. My exhibit — open for a month now — is at 933 Chung King Rd. in Chinatown.
About 700 attractive, sharp-eyed movie industry employees and other pros or amateurs in the picture business stormed our walls, and it was thrilling. A gorgeous NPR reporter and one from the prestigious LA Weekly did flattering stories. We had several mighty almosts. Hugh Hefner's daughter Christie said Hef was "under the weather" and couldn't come. David Mamet apologized for having to be in Washington, but would catch the show on his return. (David's one of my favorite collectors, as are several who came from Chicago to cheer me on like Josh Murphy and Genevieve Antonow). Also young David Good and my son Richard Shay with his 12-frame-a-second Nikon were there.
As we got off the plane, a CBS NY producer for Charlie Osgood's Sunday Morning show- called. Yes, we are agreeable to CBS doing a segment on me-just the way Erica has been pitching me for five years. (They read Chicagoist in NY and LA, apparently.)
If you can't wait until this time every Wednesday to get your Art Shay fix, please check out the photographer's blog, which is updated regularly. Art Shay's book, Chicago's Nelson Algren, is also available at Amazon.