Tuesday, 21 November 2017

EbookCoverWelcome to the George Quaintance blog. Your hosts, John Waybright and Ken Furtado, are the authors of QUAINTANCE: The Short Life of an American Art Pioneer, the only complete, authoritative biography of Quaintance ever written. Our book fills a cultural, historical and academic void for this seminal 20th century artist. It is packed with photos and available as an ebook at Smashwords, for the low price of $12.99. We are excited to have exclusive access to hundreds of never-published photographs from Quaintance’s personal scrapbooks and family archives. Sadly, John passed away in May 2013, before seeing the book published. We hope you will use this site as a platform to exchange ideas, information and images related to this under-valued artist, as well as to learn more about him. Please send your email to kfurtado@georgequaintance.com.

 

Hedy Lamarr

George Quintana was a well-known pin-up girl artist of the 1930s, specializing in pulp magazine covers. Little or nothing is known of his personal history, in spite of the fact that he is mentioned in every major work published about pin-up art of the 20th century. Reports in books and on the Internet cite him as being one of the top three illustrators in income, earning $50K annually, and mentioning his particular popularity in France.

Because of the similarity between the names George Quintana and George Quaintance, because they both were known to sign their names with exaggerated descenders on the letters Q and T, and because they both sometimes signed Geo rather then George, it has long been assumed by many that they were one and the same person. Quintana is also the name by which Tom of Finland refers to Quaintance in the film documentary Daddy & the Muscle Academy.

But there is no actual evidence to link Quintana with Quaintance, and if Quaintance was Quintana he did a very good job of not letting it be known. Quaintance clipped and saved in his personal scrapbooks hundreds of items of memorabilia in which his name or work appeared. These scrapbooks, in the custodianship of the Tom of Finland Foundation, cover a period from Quaintance's teen years up to the 1950s and there is nothing at all that mentions Quintana.

There is, however, a provocative "missing link" suggested by this pastel portrait of the lovely and famous actress Hedy Lamarr, by Quintana. One email correspondent related the following story to me:

"Hedy Lamarr mentioned George by name. Georgie I think she called him, not as an artist but as her hairdresser. Hedy was famous for not using hairdressers even on the movie set, although she thought some had marvelous skills, and she mentioned GQ as a friend she admired. This I heard from an old Hollywood makeup man."

If true, this is the closest anyone has come to establishing a real connection between Quintana and Quaintance.

 

Comments   

#3 Maybell 2017-11-19 22:53
Played it for awhile, the game is alright.

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#2 Jack R 2013-04-02 09:42
I have summaries of this court case but not the transcript. Clearly, the Quintana-Bolles connection constitutes a large part of the complaint (which was not supported by the judge's ruling) and most of Quintana's work was directly modeled after Bolles. If the Lamarr portrait was done as a gift I think it's odd that it wasn't inscribed. It's also utterly unlike (and far better) than anything else attributed to Quintana.
Great blog, by the way. Congratulations on all this and continued success.
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#1 CHARLES VERRASTRO 2011-11-01 19:30
I have acquired dozens of original Quintana magazine covers and believe they may have been done simply for the money during a transitional period in Quaintance's many-careered lifetime. Hence the comparative crudeness and imitative nature compared to Quaintance's more mature (by two decades) and definitely more original homoerotic works.
Most recently I followed up a suggestion that a lawsuit claiming brand similarity with another magazine may have shed some light on the situation. Unfortunately the NY Supreme Court's decision merely alludes to the similarity of the banner titles of the respective magazines Movie Humor and Film Fun, and the general look of the covers, without singling out Quintana's copying of the style of the more famous artist of the older magazine. Perhaps the original transcript of the legal challenge would go into more detail about the artistic figures involved, if obtainable. I am still digging.
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