After a dreadful week, for reasons (and/or persons) best left unmentioned, I took some time out today and lay on a couch in the sunshine to recuperate. Just by chance, I happened to turn on the television and was treated to a screening of 'Riviera Cocktail', a documentary on the life and work of the Irish photographer Edward Quinn. I can recommend this sort of thing for anyone who is feeling even the least bit under the weather ... I am almost entirely recovered!
A website dedicated to the photographer, through which it is possible to buy photographic prints, books and a DVD of the film, also provides the following biography:
Edward Quinn, born 1920 in Ireland, lived and worked as a photographer since the 50’s on the Côte d’Azur, which was during the “Golden Fifties” the playground of the celebrities from the world of show biz, art and business. The rich and the famous came to the Riviera to relax. But the movie stars knew how much their off-screen image counted and Quinn was at the right place at the right time and was able to get spontaneous and enchanting images which catch the charm, sophistication and chic of a legendary era. Amongst a great number of celebrities captured on film by Quinn may be mentioned Grace Kelly, Brigitte Bardot, Marlon Brando, Sophia Loren, Aristoteles Onassis, Maria Callas, Winston Churchill, Somerset Maugham.
In 1951 Edward Quinn met and photographed Pablo Picasso for the first time. Their friendship lasted until Picasso’s death in 1973. This encounter with Picasso was to be greatly influential to Quinn himself and to his subsequent work. Quinn is the author of several books and films about Picasso.Since the 60s Quinn concentrated his work on artists, amongst them Max Ernst, Alexander Calder, Francis Bacon, Salvador Dali, Graham Sutherland, David Hockney. In the late 80’s an intense relationship, similar to his friendship with Picasso, linked Quinn to Georg Baselitz.
Since 1992 until his death in 1997, Edward Quinn lived near Zurich with his Swiss wife Gret who is continuing to take care of the extensive photo archive.