Saturday, February 18, 2012

Vincent Price, Art Expert

I came across the Facebook page for the website and it reminded me of two videos I'd found on online archives. I was only able to find one (embedded below), although now, like having a song stuck in your head, I have Vincent Price in my thoughts...

Vincent Price is one of my very favorite actors.

Gene Tierney and Vincent Price in Dragonwyck
Vincent Price and Gene Tierney in "Dragonwyck" (1946)

I admire him for his acting skills as well as his varied interests and his enthusiasm for acting despite being typecast in horror roles in the later half of his career.

Roger Corman and Vincent Price
Price with Roger Corman on the set of "House of Usher" (1960)

His career began far from the b-films for which he's best known. He started in the theater, notably acting with Orson Welles' Mercury Theater in two productions and got his big break in film acting in Otto Preminger's Laura (1944).

Gene Tierney and Vincent Price in Laura
Tierney and Price together for the first time in "Laura" (1944)

Reading the biography Vincent Price Unmasked: A Biography by James Robert Parrish and Steven Whitney (Drake Publishers Inc, New York, 1974) I learned of Price's passion for food and cooking (writing three cookbooks), for his dog Joe, as demonstrated in his book The Book of Joe: About a Dog and His Man (Doubleday & Co., Inc., 1962), and for art (writing four books on the subject).

Mary and Vincent Price Cookbook

He didn't just love art, but was interested in bringing art awareness to the general public. In addition to starting an art gallery, Little Gallery, open from 1943 to 1945, he lectured on art. In 1962 he created an art program for Sears, Roebuck and Co. Below is a 17 min video intended to educate Sears employees.

The Vincent Price Collection of Fine Art: An Informational Program Production (1960), film hosted at Internet Archive

I hesitate from reading Hollywood biographies as I rarely find them inspiring and are usually so sad and tragic. Vincent Price on the other hand seemed to be such a great sport, jumping into any project with zest and consequently lived an varied and fascinating life.

Kermit the Frog and Vincent Price
Image borrowed from

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