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Bettie Page Groped by Buffoons Striparama Mr. America of 1953 ? and Tempest Storm

Bettie Page wasn't a burlesque performer, as her inept dancing in the few films she appeared in supports, but one in particular does feature the pin up icon speaking.  Striparama, a stinker directed by cinema master Jerald Intrator, who also put up some of the dough.  Bettie's on screen dialog consists of her inviting two horrible vaudeville comic buffoons to feel her up during a dream sequence.  Ahh...the glamor of show biz.

The budget was 40 grand.  For that they got Tempest Storm, a deal at any price, Miss Page, some trained birds, Mr. America of 1953, supposedly, and a boom mike which appears when it shouldn't.

Ten years later Intrator would go on to direct a masterpiece of sleaze, but this wasn't it.

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Tiny Ackerman Builds F-Shoes to the Sky Vintage Sleaze Shoe Porn of the 1960s

Tiny Ackerman was one of those guys who was gigantic but went by the name Tiny.  Like a bald guy named Curly.   He was 6 foot six inches tall, and if he wore his own shoes he could have played for the Knicks.  Rather, the Knickerbockers, the Dutch moniker they played under back then.  He would have been like "Chief" in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and just  stood by the basket waiting for the pass.  

I found a little information contributed to an auction listing by his daughter.  Apparently the "exclusive" shoe store was in Cedarhurst, NY, but as heels became New York skyscrapers, he found a new market among Leonard Burtman's fetish crowd and opened up in the city.  Tiny's father sold shoes too, but on Second Avenue WAY back…when shoes were meant for walking, not posing.  The business began in 1931.  They seem to bring about a hundred bucks a pair on Ebay these days among vintage clothing folk. 

How Tiny hooked up here with Burtman is a mystery I will pursue one day for a book I am writing when not entertaining folks for free on Facebook.  I suspect  (duh) that he happened to be walking through Times Square one day and happened upon a magazine Lenny published titled High Heels, Tiny slapped his giant forehead, and the rest is history (and a big display ad in one of Burtman's attempts to expand the market for women's shoes.) As you can see here, Lenny put the SHOES on a pedestal, not the dame.

The pic above shoes one of Tiny's shoes, but you'll have to imagine the suction cups they point out in the advertisement.  A safety feature! Needle Stilettos.

Watch those subway grates, girls…and guys.

Today, shoes this high are short…but at one time the US Government investigated them (for your safety, I guess) See below!

Books and Ebooks Available HERE

War of the Naked Canadians Sunbathing for Health Magazine Hypocrisy Humor and History

Sunbathing for Health?  A Canadian magazine intended to help Canucks make it through the long winter…just aim a heat lamp on your knees and hunker down, you'll make it.  What makes Sunbathing for Health good for this family friendly blog is that while it was a nudist magazine, the professional models, hardly representative of the folks inside,  kept their clothes on for the covers!  I can show them without attracting the ire of angry moms.  Things must have eased up, as later covers have, well…more tan.  But they still air-brushed the brushes.

What we have here is a double hypocrisy.  First of all, the sun hasn't been too healthy since we broke the ozone layer.  Better to stay inside and read the magazines.  Second of all, the women on the cover only undressed to earn their modeling commission or to go to bed.  None of these women were really card-carrying Canadian naturists.

Canada.  The Mexico of the North.  Vast sprawling lands of cedar-shingled saunas filled with pasty el-boffo for 9 months of the year…whereas this magazine went year 'round.

Sunbathing for Health famously used Bettie Page twice for the cover, but I don't think she ever went to the frozen north…though it was before cellphones, so we can't look up her "tower pings" to confirm it.

The publisher was Rex in Toronto, and I believe they started publishing in 1940. 

Now one would think if anyone could get along, it would be naked volleyball players.  Nope.  Check out this crib from Wiki, which seem unusually preoccupied with naturists to me…but we all have our predilections.

Most of those clubs united in the Canadian Sunbathing Association, which affiliated with the American Sunbathing Association in 1954. Several disagreements between eastern and western members of the CSA resulted in the breakup of CSA into the Western Canadian Sunbathing Association (WCSA) and the Eastern Canadian Sunbathing Association (ECSA) in 1960. The ECSA endured much in-fighting over the next decade and a half, leading to its official demise in 1978. The WCSA continues today as the American Association for Nude Recreation - Western Canadian Region

War of the Naked Candians! 

Personally, I love skinny dipping, but I'm not a "joiner" so have never felt it necessary to belong to a club,  Canadian or otherwise.  Just put up the clothing optional sign and leave me alone,  I'm trying to read here.

There were two types of nudist magazines. Real ones, which promoted a healthy lifestyle, and fake ones which promoted only a way for sleazy gangsters to sell spicy pictures.  I think Rex sat on the fence.  They claimed "sun worship" status, and yet most of the inside pages were women.  After all, only guys are gawkers.  I am going to bet 99 percent of their subscribers were dudes.

Browse and Order Jim Linderman Books and Ebooks ($5.99 each) HERE at BLURB.

Eric Stanton draws the Logo for Forty Plus Greatest Moments in Vintage Sleaze # 11

Fetish artist Eric Stanton creates one of the most memorable logos in magazine history, but no one sees it except pervs.  

A short anecdote from the editor.  I once worked at a prominent news organization, and was asked to obtain some issues of a senior market magazine titled "Fifty Plus" aimed, I suppose, at the aging baby boomers.  I had to call around and try to find some issues, and placed one to a newsstand I had luck with often.  I asked the gentleman, who was of Indian descent (as are many of the newsstand operators in New York City) if he had any issues of Fifty Plus.  He answered, with a questioning, thoughtful "no...but I have Forty Plus."

I've often wondered if he tried to stock "Fifty Plus" after that.

The logo is a stylized image of Tempest Storm busting at the seams.  Bless her.

Logo for Leonard Burtman's 40 plus digest by Eric Stanton.

Other entries in The Greatest Moments in Vintage Sleaze are HERE.

Books and Ebooks by Jim Linderman are

Tawny ? The Most Beautiful African-American Pin Up Model in History ?

The most beautiful African-American model ever?  She appears on the cover of "Tawny Models" in the early 1950s, a smut digest pretending to be "figure studies for artists" to avoid censors. She appears in 4" x 5" photo sets sold from the back of magazines...and was photographed at the same sessions which produced the most famous pinup model of all, Bettie Page.

Fifty years later, she appears on the cover of my book which could tell the story of every African-American model trying to find a place in front of the camera during the second half of the 20th century. She likely faced racism, prejudice...and as was the case for all nude models during the time, she may have faced arrest and prosecution. Today no one knows who this young African-American model and pioneer was.

"Tawny Models" though undated, was published between 1950 and 1955 with a Miami, Florida address, but that could be a mail drop or a ruse, as nearly identical booklets appear with New York addresses at the same time. Nude photographs were sold under the counter and by mail at the time, and arrests were common. "Tawny Models" was part of a large group of picture only "Art Study" booklets by a largely unknown photographer going under the pseudonym of Marno. "Marno the Photographer" actually, but he had other names too.

Likewise, the color picture here (color only because the camera man tinted the original by hand) was taken around 1955. The undated "stag picture" with the other models would have been sold as a "strip-set" of 8 depicting clothes being removed. There is no documentation available.

Light-skinned, short natural hair...the photographs, while cropped here for discretion, could have been taken then or now. Just one of the thousands of models who worked for five bucks a session, now lost, and always anonymous. Something of a rebel in a field which seldom took note of African-American beauty. This model who today would be called "a fresh face" would likely be well into her 70s, but since the racket was tough she might not be around at all.

Tawny Models Camera Digest circa 1950 Photographs by "Marno" and Hand-Tinted photograph by Rudolph Rossi circa 1955, Collection Jim Linderman
Secret History of the Black Pin Up ebook ($5.99) is available HERE

Paperback is $26.95 available from the same link.

John Donnelly Cartoonist Comic Gag Pin Ups Missing in Action Vintage Sleaze

Any help out there?  I'm not finding anything about pin up gag cartoonist John Donnelly.  All work here was published in 1953.  

I assume, (making an ass of me alone) he came from the greatest generation.  By that I mean, he drew on duffel bags in the big one, but then maybe not.  

I would like to preserve a little information about this unusual cartoonist before acid eats the rest of his work.  

Books and Affordable ebooks by Jim Linderman are available HERE

Art Messick Unsung Hero of Photography Number Seven in the Series by Jim Linderman on Vintage Sleaze Art of the Blind Photographer

Art Messick, unsung hero of photography for sure.  Art began taking pictures at six years old.  That would be 1927 folks.   Art was, I kid you not, hired by Kodak in the 1940s to experiment with color film just to see how well it reproduced skin tones.  When Art took pictures of skin, they sold.  From the earliest Hollywood all the way to Hustler Magazine…If there was flesh to be photographed, Art was there.  Art is the most famous photographer you never heard of.  Art spans history, but you have never heard of Art Messick.

Now I have a teaser headline on this post about Art's eyes.  How can a photographer be blind?  Well, he was blind only for a few years.  Actually Art was blind twice, once as a young man and once again as an old man.  Too much work with arc lights burned his retinas…but his sight was restored with experimental surgery once, and he worked for decades again.
Even I am too young to remember the Bob Cummings show on television.  It was in the early days the medium, but it was an early sitcom about the follies of a photographer…played by Bob Cummings, of course.  Guess  who was the show based on?  Art Messick.   He was even asked to PLAY the photographer, but he turned it down.  That's right, folks.  The person who literally DEFINED glamor pin-up photography to the early television viewing public, and you never heard of him.  Art was the first woman-chasing pin up photographer!

Above, Bob Cummings plays Art Messick in the Television Show The Bob Cummings Show 1955!

In the June 1950 issue of Popular Photography, below, one can read about another brilliant idea Art had…rental darkrooms and studios for photographers.  He would provide entire set-ups for shutterbugs and charge a nominal rent just to help the profession along.  That's Art peering back at a camera while one of his clients poses a dame.  Handsome fellow too, that Art...he could have played Bob Cummings!
Mr. Messick was born in 1921, and  by the time the second world war came along he was shooting pictures of Hollywood stars for a living.  He directed films, some apparently nudie-cuties in 3-D!  He was close friends with silent film comic Harold Lloyd.  He worked with, and helped develop the earliest uses of the strobe light in photography…which resulted in stunning photographs of Fred Astaire leaping through the air.

Many of the pin ups which appeared in Sir Knight,  Adam and other staples of 1960s cheesecake were Art's.  Art took the pic of Terri Turner on the cover of Adam here, and Jeanne Mack on the cover of same.  He took the photo of busty blond babe Julie Redding here above.  He took Betty McGowan on the cover of Modern Man with the inadvertent come-on "The Hazards of Nude Modelling" next to his photo.  He took Bambi Hamilton on the cover of Minx.  He took thousands upon thousands more.  You may have seen Art's work as by "staff photographer" or "our intrepid cameraman" or some such thing.  They are often not credited, so we will never know how many, but for generations of men, when they think of a woman, they are being influenced by Art Messick.  

Art Messick spent the last years of his live assembling one of the largest collections photographs of rare Hawaiian flowers. 

Art had five wives and passed away in 2007 at the age of 85.

Thanks to the nearest thing to a biography one will find on Art Messick, the lovely tribute by Robert Brummitt HERE 

UNSUNG HEROES OF PHOTOGRAPHY is a series on Vintage Sleaze the Blog.  Previous profiles include George Boardman Danny Rouzer  Russ Meyer  Wil Blanche  Benno Friedman  and Bunny Yeager  


               Above, Art Messick shoots a Minx in 1959. 

Judy O'Day Model of the 1950s Vintage Sleaze Pin Up Cypher

If for no other reason, Judy O'Day will go down in history as the first pin-up centerfold in Satan Magazine.  A good career move?  Well…I guess sometimes fellas feel like Satan, sometimes not.  The fellow with a pitchfork and ears may not be a scientific fact, but Judy was.  First of all, she was featured in one of the most lovely photographs ever taken of a woman.  She was upside down, but still.  It appears here, uncredited, in the sleaze "Nu-Art" digest devoted to Ms. O'Day, unfortunately with no date or address.  One of those fake "figure study" books intended to arouse men under the guise of teaching them photography.  Surprisingly, for an "art" publication "Nu-Art" sure has cheap printing.

She was not related to singer Anita O'Day, nor was Harry Belefonte singing about her in the Banana Boat Song. "Day O…..Daayyyyyyy O" but me wanna come home if Judy is there anyway.

She was also the centerfold for Modern Man Magazine in 1958, and in Hi-Life a year later,  so Judy was used to staples in her tummy.  She is today best known for having her images cribbed from my original posts with historical context removed and with no appropriate credit or acknowledgment.   Well…that's the way it goes.  (Amateur writer tosses hands in resignation.)

At her best, she looked like Scarlett Johansson.  At her worst, she needed a new haircut.  She also posed for sleaze king Irving Klaw, also generally not a good career move unless you were Bettie Page or Tempest Storm…but I don't think she did any of the "special" requests Irving would fill while the customers paid to watch.  Ugh. 

Oh oh…yes she did.  I find her sprawled on a dirty couch bound and gagged, but she appears to be in Lenny's place, not Irving's.  Well, that's good. Maybe only Lenny was watching, not some creep.  There are several photos  of Judy on Irving's less funky couch…but she's only looking perky, not abused. She is called simply "Judy O" for some reason.

Judy was also photographed (by James J. Pappas) for the cover of crappy LP  "A Little Spice" by Faye Richmonde, but the company later released the album with ANOTHER naked women. (According to the book "The Melody Man: Joe Davis and the New York Music Scene" by Bruce Bastin)  Maybe they found the bondage pics like I did, and thought it inappropriate.  Although the label didn't seem to mind putting things I have to black out on the cover.  I'm family friendly!  Joe Davis wasn't.  At any rate, Faye sang dirty songs in night clubs for a living.  It is fifty years later,  and I still have to put a big X on Judy's chest to keep folks from being offended.  Now that is timeless art.

Judy O'Day Digest "America's Most Sensational Pin-Up and Figure Model" Nu-Art Publications. No Date. Collection Victor Minx

Bill Ward as his pseudonym McCartney Reveals a Burlesque Secret

Bill Ward Under his pseudonym McCartney reveals a secret to the audience 1956.  Ward also signed and sold work under the name Monier as late as 1962.   

NEW Russ Meyer Product! 4 unreleased films on New DVD Vintage Bodies Vintage Sleaze

Word comes to Vintage Sleaze that the Russ Meyer Trust has released VINTAGE BODIES which compiles 4 early works that were never planned for release.  All from 1960 to 1963, a period when the director was experimenting with what would become trademark techniques.  Of considerable interest to film collectors OR film students, as there is much to see in a Russ Meyer film (not the least his gut tough, ham-fisted editing…)  Included in the release is a 65 minute feature titled "Erotica" and an even long title "Heavenly Bodies" as well as two shorts, one which is titled Skycrapers and Brassieres from 1961.  Sounds in character.

While these are indicated as "the beginning of "exactly how Russ began his career" the lost film French Peep Show is not included. 

 Must see for Russ Meyer historians, fans and thrill-seekers!

LINK to the Russ Meyer Store is HERE.  Spend some time.  There is an amazing body of work available.

Robert Harrison Cannibalizes Beauty Parade and Eyeful with Wink Vintage Sleaze

Robert Harrison, King of the Pin Up BIG magazines, cannibalizes his own line of smut by introducing yet another title, Wink.

"Cannibalize" is the term used when a market leader eats into his own sales by introducing a similar product in greed.  Harrison was greedy.  Wink follows Beauty Parade and Eyeful.  Combined, the three took up nearly a yard of shelf space at the newsstand!  Compared to Beauty Parade, Wink was filthy.  But you know, in a good way.  The same cover was used at least twice.  Once in 1949. Once in 1953.  (They all looked the same to Harrison anyway...like money.)

Brigitte Bardot in Wax Marilyn Monroe in Wax, Gina Lollobrigida in Wax Vintage Sleaze

Wax Brigitte Bardot, propped up in front of a dressing room mirror so you can take in every angle of her splendid wax rear. Bardot has been convicted five times for "inciting racial hatred" as she doesn't like race mixing. In her book "A Scream in the Silence" she attacks "the mixing of genes" and calls homosexuals "fairground freaks". In 1966, Harry Belafonte recorded "Zombie Jamboree" which has a verse dedicated to her. She used to be hot.

Wax Marilyn, is, of course, a wax icon and as such an easy target. Wax Marilyn is really Norma Jeane Mortenson, although because of divorce, abandonment and such, her last name is really up for grabs. As a child, she grew up in foster homes and was sexually assaulted...maybe. She appeared in a movie called "Scudda Hoo! Scudda Hey! She was an alcoholic and drug addict. For a time, her address was "Payne Whitney Psychiatric Clinic" She broke Joltin' Joe Dimaggio's heart which alone earns her an honorary place in the wax hall of shame. Tony Curtis once said kissing her was "like kissing Hitler" While dating Arthur Miller, the press referred to the couple as "The Egghead and the Hourglass" After "meeting" President Kennedy, she repeatedly telephoned the White House so often Bobby was sent out to LA and presumably told her to cut it out. Hugh Hefner owns the crypt spot next to her, and the one spot directly above hers was sold on ebay in 2009. She used to be hot.

Gina Lollobrigida,remarkably, and despite being showered with flowers while lounging on a chaise taking calls from suitors...kept her nose clean. I have nothing scandalous to report, other than she used to be hot.

Three Wax Museum Postcards, c. 1960 Collection Jim Linderman


Bettie Page Through a Pretend Keyhole in Humorama Vintage Sleaze Lou Magila

Hilariously unfunny cartoonist Lou Magila, who I have made fun of before HERE attempts in this work to show "the part of a gal seen by a keyhole peeper" in yet another of his appropriated and repurposed gags for Humorama 1966.  At least he picked the right model (s).

Lou Magila Gag construction from Zip Digest January 1966 Timely Features.


Camera Night at the Ivar Photography Exhibit

Vintage Sleaze has received a press release for an interesting exhibition of vintage photographs taken at the Ivar strip club on "camera nights" in 1982.  The exhibit runs through November 25, 2012 at drkrm gallery in LA.

"It's cold out there. Colder than a ticket taker's smile at the Ivar Theatre on Saturday night" Tom Waits - Nighthawks at the Diner

drkrm is pleased to present Camera Night at the Ivar, a group exhibition featuring rarely seen images from the Ivar Theatre in Hollywood, presented for the first time together.

Featuring photographs by:

Norman Breslow

Bill Dane
David Fahey
Anthony Friedkin
Michael Guske
Ryan Herz
Beth Herzhaft     
Paul McDonough
The Ivar Theatre in Hollywood has inspired lyrics in the songs of Tom Waits. Photographer Garry Winogrand's images of Ivar strippers have been displayed at the Museum of Modern Art. The Ivar started life as a legitimate performance theater when it first opened in 1951. Performers through the years have included Lord Buckley, Lenny Bruce and many others. Elvis made a movie there. The Grateful Dead played there in 1966. The theatre changed hands frequently and, in the 1970’s, it eventually became a full-nudity strip joint - one of the last standing “Burlesk” houses in the United States.
The Ivar was lewd and notorious in its day. It was described by its patrons as “a chamber of desperation, a mausoleum for souls -- on and off the runway.” Ross MacLean, one time stage manager and spotlight operator for two years, says "It's difficult to convey how bizarrely un-sexy and un-romantic the place was. A lot of the girls just danced around in street clothes, and took them off with about as much charm as someone undressing in a locker room.”

Ivar Theatre newspaper ad 1977 Ross MacLean Collection
Sunday and Tuesday evenings were camera nights, where for the cover charge the customers could take as many pictures as they liked. Each girl's show lasted twenty minutes; she was required to be fully undressed after five, and a minimum of five minutes was to be used with "floor work": moving about either seated or prone on the runway. If a customer put a dollar on the catwalk, the performer would give him an up-close and very personal view of her body. A dancer could do from one to three shows a day; for each they were paid seven dollars.
At the time the club drew many now-notable photographers including Winogrand (who according to historian John Szarkowski, shot 150 rolls of film there), Bill Dane, David Fahey, Paul McDonough and Anthony Friedkin to name a few. drkrm is drawn to curating this exhibit for many reasons. It was a time when these photographers were somewhat known but not on the level they are now and some were all part of a greater circle in New York City that also included Diane Arbus, Lee Friedlander and Tod Papageorge. Some of them were good friends and used to shoot together, even following each other out to California.

On another level, what's intriguing is allowing photographs to be taken inside the club, it gives us an incredible look at an audience of voyeurs, normally protected by the cover of darkness. In that split second of the camera's flash, we can see the men in the audience, their facial expressions, how they're sitting, where they're looking or not looking. The late LA artist Mike Kelly described the behavior of the Ivar's male audience members, “as if drugged in a dentist’s chair, the men sit frozen and immobile. There is no show of emotion, no hooping, hollering or wild applause. Seances are livelier.” This exhibit is as much about the relationship between the women on stage and the men in the audience as it is about the actual image and the photographers who took them. The images in this show were captured in 1977 through 1989 when the Ivar closed.

The catalog to the exhibition is available at the gallery's website HERE 

Tempest Storm Cover Girl on the Cover of Dazzle Vintage Sleaze

Tempest Storm on the cover 1957.  Take your pick:  Diverting Damsels Daringly Delineated or Caution Cuties for Cunning?  More absurd alliteration by Walter Hale (subject of a forthcoming post)

Dazzle Magazine 1957 
Collection Victor Minx

HERE by Jim Linderman

Malaland Magazine: The Pinup Stylings of Mala Mastroberte Book Review

Book Review Malaland Magazines: The Pin Up Stylings of Mala Mastroberte

Mala Mastroberte is the Zelig of Pin up magazines.  Self-taught and created, she is an artist who reinvents vintage pin up poses from the classic (and obscure) magazine covers of 1920s to the 1960s.  Once displayed for sale on the top rack of the novelty shop downtown, each is now appropriated and recreated by the artist in remarkable replicas.   Mala morphs in meticulous detail, and all the costumes, make-up, photography and post- production is hers alone.  These are all self-portraits.  Mala takes those "put yourself on the cover of Time Magazine" mock-ups available years ago to an entirely new level.  From the top rack to a place of her own.

In turns Ms. Mastroberte is Marilyn or Bettie, brunette or redhead, a victim or criminal, a siren or vixen.  In her work, she recreates a colorful world now gone, and reminds us what magazines once were.  Every single one of the newsstand marvels she chooses to appropriate is now extinct.

I have an advantage when it comes to reviewing Malaland Magazine: The Pinup Stylings of Mala Mastroberte.  I may be one of the few who has actually seen many of the original covers Mala manipulates…and thus can appreciate the backdrops Ms. Mastroberte drops herself into.  She was also profiled in the Vintage Sleaze Contemporary Series here where some of her earlier work is shown alongside the originals for comparison. 

Malaland Magazine: The Pinup Stylings of Mala Mastroberte is available from Binary Publications and Amazon HERE.

Betty Page "Poses in Faded Dungarees" for Leonard Burtman Burmel Vintage Sleaze The Rare Digests #36

Bettie Page "putters around the house in a pair of faded dungarees..." according to Leonard Burtman

Presenting Bettie Page at Home No Date Burmel (circa 1957?) 
Collection Victor Minx

SEE ALSO PROTO-PORN: The Art Figure Study Scam of the 1950s  ($5.99 Ebook) 

THIS IS NUMBER THIRTY SIX IN THE SERIES 'THE RARE DIGESTS' Small essays on hopelessly obscure and scarce soft-core publications of the 1950s. Enjoy them All!