JAMES ABBE Photographer of the Jazz Age


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From Hollywood to the Folies Bergère, the glittering stars of the 1920s stage and screen are celebrated in this display of portraits by James Abbe.

With perfect posture and knowing smiles, these magically-lit studies provide a candid commentary on early 20th century celebrity. Abbe (1883–1973) began his career in New York, moving to Paris in the 1920s.

He produced many iconic images from the world of entertainment, making portraits in his studio and on location for key movies and stage productions featuring Lillian Gish, Dorothy Gish and Fred and Adele Astaire. Other fashion studies show Gilda Gray, the Dolly Sisters and Louise Brooks.

Curated by renowned photo historian Terence Pepper with the James Abbe Archive, the selection adds valuable context to the garments on display.

Venue Details & Map

Fashion and Textile Museum

83 Bermondsey Street
+44 (0)20 7407 8664
Public transport:
From London Bridge Station walk towards Tower Bridge down Tooley Street for about 3 minutes. Then turn right in Bermondsey Street. The museum is on the left hand side of the street.

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