Monday, March 13, 2017

Me and Denny Denfield at the Bob Mizer Foundation

At the Foundation before the doors open.
While The Magazine store continues to be fully operational in this building, it is a delight to see the Bob Mizer Foundation steadily moving into its new, permanent home near the corner of Larkin and Geary streets in San Francisco, California.

I happily accepted Dennis Bell's recent offer that I help archive Denny Denfield's collection of negatives, which the San Francisco-based photographer bequeathed to The Magazine, which, in turn, has given it to the Foundation.

Last weekend, I worked through a binder of Denfield's negatives and photographs, identifying models, then sorting by photo shoots.

Sorting photos of Harold Martin
I was surprised to learn from Bell that Denfield and Mizer were not only friends in the 1940's, but accompanied one another on photo shoots. That became readily apparent, when I examined Denfield's photographs of Harold Martin shot in the desert: Mizer took photographs of the same model in that locale.
Sorting photos of Howard Martin on the beach.
Most astonishing of all, however, was the discovery that, in the 1940's, Denfield was at the Athletic Model Guild, when Mizer took this photograph of Gene Eberle battling Don Silvas. I reviewed several behind-the-scenes photographs that Denfield took on set: they show the models posing on a raised platform lit by two kleig lights and a lamp shined through a glass bowl to create the light effect on the wall.

I've never seen another photographer's work shot at the Athletic Model Guild.

Bob Mizer's photo of Gene Eberle and Don Silvas.
Over the coming weeks, I look forward to more discoveries as I archive Denfield's work, which greatly deserves to be preserved and made available to those interested in fine physique photography.

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