18 November 2012

The Choice of Meiter

Our guest today is my colleague-collector Meiter from the city of Groningen in the north of the The Netherlands. Regularly I buy film star postcards from her e-shop at the Dutch site Marktplaats. We started to correspond about the beauty of postcards, about our passion for collecting, film, our children and what they like to eat, about life. Thus I invited her to write at EFSP about her favorite European film star postcards, and she accepted. Meiter: "I like postcards so much, because they resemble (and when old, often are) real photos. They tell a story and represent a certain era. Because they are cards of filmstars, you can read a lot about them in books, magazines and on the internet. You can also make up your own story."
So, here's the Choice of.... Meiter.

Lilli Palmer
Lilli Palmer. German postcard by UFA, Berlin. Collection: Meiter.
Meiter: "This is one of my favourite cards of Lilli Palmer. She seems relaxed and even laughs. On most of her photos she comes across as an elegant and beautiful woman, but remote. On this one she wears her Sunday dress with, what looks like, an apron. Her husband is out hunting and she just finished cleaning the house and enjoys a well deserved rest in the garden. I like the kitschiness and colours."

Sophia Loren
Sophia Loren. French postcard by Éditions Hazan, Paris. Collection: Meiter.
"Oh, oh, how beautiful. It is not a very old card (I am sure there must be an original somewhere), but it was one of the first cards of which I thought ‘I must have it’. What first struck me was the thing on which she is sitting: is it a chair? It looks like a retro 1960’s design chair, but you only see a curved leg. Sophia manages to sit quite elegantly on it and has a stylish, yet coquettish air. And still, she has this rather innocent look. (And why is she pointing at her knee?) I love it."

Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe. Vintage postcard, no. PU 13. Collection: Meiter.
"I know Marilyn is a Hollywood Filmstar, not a European Star. But this card is My Pride. It is a card I have not seen before. (Now some people will say, of course, it is quite common). On the back it only says “Nr. PU 13”. I assume PU stands for Pin Up and perhaps it is part of a series pin-up cards, Marilyn being number 13 (the unlucky number..). She represents the optimistic 1950’s and 60’s and plays those funny roles in her movies. Yet, she herself led this tragic life and had to play a role both in her movies and her own life. Nevertheless, I am just very proud of this card and like to boast about it."

O.W. Fischer
O.W. Fischer. German postcard by IRMA-Verlag, Stuttgart. Collection: Meiter.
"O.W. Fischer loved cats and, as we can see on this card, cats loved him. I never understood this man. That makes him interesting. He seemed to lead a life of opposites. This photo represents an example: although at he end of his life he lived for and with his cats, he left half of his money to a dogs’ home. This cat is ignorant of the fact that she will not inherit any money. She just adores him."

Caterina Valente
Caterina Valente. German postcard by UFA, Berlin. Collection: Meiter.
"I don’t have anything with Caterine Valente and her music, but I love her cards. A very photogenic lady, and the more kitsch the better."

Jester Naefe
Jester Naefe. German postcard by Kolibri-Verlag. Collection: Meiter.
"Jester Naefe was also called the German Marilyn Monroe. She had a promising future as an actress. Unfortunately she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and died, after an agressive progression of this disease, 8 years later, only 37 years old."

Jeanne Moreau
Jeanne Moreau. East-German postcard by VEB Progress Film-Vertrieb. Collection: Meiter.
"BEAUTIFUL. This card reminds me of a picture of Marilyn Monroe. Marilyn never had her prom photo taken. In 1956, when she was 30 (!) years old, she asked Milton Greene if he could photograph her as a ‘prom-girl’. The picture Greene made, looks just like this photo of Jeanne Monroe..uh..Moreau."

Gina Lollobrigida
Gina Lollobrigida. French postcard by E.D.U.G., no. 55. Collection: Meiter.
"This card is not a cliché picture of La Lollobrigida. I like the colours in it. It is not kitschy, yet colourful. It is as if Gina happens to pass by and accidentally had her picture taken. She seems rather young, but frankly I have no idea. Rather mysterious. But then again I do not know much about her, and it might be a scene in one of her most famous films."

Claudia Cardinale
Claudia Cardinale. German postcard by Kolibri-Verlag. Collection: Meiter.
"Claudia once signed a contract which forbade her to marry, gain weight and cut her hair. She already had given birth to a son when she was 17 years old. The family pretended that Claudia was a (much older) sister. When he was 19, he was told his older sister was his mother. How much are you willing to give up to be a filmstar? Claudia Cardinale apparently quite a lot. Originally she did not want to be a moviestar at all. She wanted to be a teacher in her home country Tunisia. Which would have made her happier..."

Anny Ondra
And last but not least: Anny Ondra. German postcard by Ross Verlag, no. 6847/1, 1931-1932. Photo: Lothar Stark-Film. Collection: Meiter.
"I hesitated between Sybille Schmitz and Anny Ondra. But I saw that an extensive article already had been written about the androgyne, alcoholic, drug-addicted, bisexual Sybille Schmitz (I just wanted to use all these descriptions in connection with Sybille Schmitz), so the last card is of pretty, pretty Anny Ondra. When I read about pretty Anny Ondra, I have to think of ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ where a silent movie is transformed into a musical with real sound. Lina Lamont (Jean Hagen) appears to have a rather shriekish and screaming voice and it is decided that her voice will be dubbed over. Something similar happened to Anny Ondra, not because she was loud-voiced, but because her thick accent was considered unacceptable. I think she sounded lovely, but it is true that she did not sound like a London born girl.. She looks lovely and was married to the same man, a German boxer, for 54 years. Quite romantically. Yet, I am sure there must be more to this story."

Thanks Meiter, bedankt Carla!

The Choice of... is an irregularly appearing series. Earlier guests were Egbert Barten, Véronique3, Didier Hanson, Asa, Bunched Undies, Miss Mertens, and Manuel Palomino Arjona.

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