The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Artists in Action #566

James Dean dabbles in photography


nursemyra said...

Interesting photo, I'd not seen it before

H. P. L. said...

He's so cool he doesn't even need to look down in the viewfinder.

MichaelRyerson said...

Remarkably difficult to take a bad picture of Jimmie.

marietta said...

Ein seltenes foto von ihm,voller charm und sympatie und jungenhaftigkeit,ich liebe es ganz besonders,thanks for this,tom.

Brooks said...

Not having to look into the viewfinder, in real life, is not as cool:


-K- said...

I don't think I've ever seen this photo of him before.

Testify said...

Its by Roy Schatt who also took the iconic Torn Sweater series (which provided the back drop for the stage show Grease).

He was teaching Jimmy photography at the time this pick was taken. Schatt would subsequently teach Elia Kazan photography too:
Schatt writes in the introduction to his book "James Dean A Portrait"
'"You?" I said to Kazan."Me teach you? Give me one good reason." He had the greatest: "I want to be able to argue with my cameraman."'

The same book features some shots of Jimmy Dean and a group that included Marty Landau and Leonard Rosenman lunching on the roof of the Museum Of Modern Art in New York. As a school boy growing up in Liverpool I used to stare at these pictures and think how marvelous it would be to be an actor and move in such illustrious circles.

Trader said...

I hope you don't mind if I reproduce this super picture on my blog.

I managed to mention where the picture comes from and the copyright as well.


Tom Sutpen said...


Absolutely. Go right ahead.