Colouring in the margins: George Hoyningen-Huene’s work in film (1953-1962)

Activity: Talk or presentation typesPresentation


In this talk I will present on my current project which combines archival research, aesthetic analysis and videographic criticism to examine the influence of George Hoyningen-Huene on the aesthetics of Hollywood colour film of the 1950s and 60s. George Hoyningen-Huene (1900-1968) is best known as an influential fashion photographer of the twentieth century, and especially for his work with French Vogue and Harpers Bazaar in the 1930s and 1940s. Huene was a friend of the director George Cukor, and they made six films together (including Cukor’s first colour film, A Star is Born in 1954), along with the production designer Gene Allen. From 1953-1962 Huene worked as a colour consultant in Hollywood, on a total of thirteen films (he is also credited as the title sequence designer on six and costume designer on one). Despite his connections with Cukor and other influential cultural figures (such as Aldous Huxley, GW Pabst, Katharine Hepburn and Edgar Neville) Huene’s position is one on the margins of the film industry, as a freelance worker not contracted to a major studio or company and as a queer artist. My interest in Huene lies in his potential as a case study to expand previous histories of both colour consultancy and queer craft in the mainstream, thereby enriching our understanding of the technological and aesthetic developments of film as a collaborative medium.
Period8 Feb 2023
Held atFilm Studies
Degree of RecognitionLocal