Friday, July 11, 2008


Dorian Leigh for Harper's Bazaar

Dorian Leigh "Avenue Montaigne" photographed
by Richard Avedon

Dorian Leigh photographed by Irving Penn

Legendary model Dorian Leigh passed away this Monday July 9th 2008 at a nursing home in Church Hills, Virginia or Alzheimer's related complications. She was 91.

Considered one of the first "super"models, she started her career in the 1940's and continued working through the 1960's. In 1946 she graced 6 Vogue covers and followed with 50 more covers in various magazines for the next 6 years.

She has worked for photographers such as Irving Penn, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Richard Avedon, and other legends for publications such as Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, Life, etc.

Her work for Revlon's "Fire and Ice" and "Cherries in the Snow" campaigns are still considered iconic. This success led her to earning an annual salary of $300,000 which as unheard of at that time.

Dorian Leigh is also credited for jump starting her younger sister Suzy Parker's modeling career by stipulating to Eileen Ford that she would sign with Ford Models as long as they would sign her sister sight unseen. Suzy's career would wind up eclipsing Dorian's. You can learn more about both by reading Michael Gross' "MODEL: The Ugly Business of Beautiful People".

Ms. Leigh was also the inspirations for the Jo Stockton character in Funny Face and for Truman Capote's Holly Golightly character in Breakfast at Tiffany's. Both were played by Audrey Hepburn in the movie versions.

No comments: