Sunday, December 14, 2008

LIFE Photo Archive: Donyale Luna



I have been passing a lot of time searching for old images and articles on Google since they've expanded their search function to include vintage magazines like Ebony, Jet, and photo archives from magazines like Life. The index terms used aren't as robust as I would like but it is still a treat to pull up old articles and photos like these of model Donyale Luna in her prime. Man, she had a thing for Austin Powers type ruffles and money fur coats didn't she?

S: Google/Life Magazine

10 comments:

marci said...

thank you! one of my all time favourite fierce models.. taken away to early alas..

Ankh Ah said...

I wrote about Donyale a little while ago. I think she's intriguing. My absolute favorite photo of her is this one by Richard Avedon: http://www.ncku.edu.tw/~ioas/htmfiles/liujc/photo/81.htm

sdg1844 said...

An amazing looking woman. I've never seen so many photos of her before. Her background was pretty interesting to read about.

Anonymous said...

The woman who always refused to admit her black identity is now being remembered by only the black community. Serves her right; and this foolishness in the black community has to end. Just because someone is black does not automatically mean that we should bow down and thank God for their achievements. Being black and successful is not an instant reason to be held in high regards in the black community; you need to positively influence and uplift to earn such respect.

Look at O.J simpson? when he was arrested for murdering his wife, the black community roared in protest. Now, look at what has happened. We have turned into fools for blindly supporting a murderer. We did not bother to look into evidence; we shamelessly supported him cos he was black. What did he ever do to the black community? all he cared about was chasing young white girls who had an appetite for his stacks.

Good riddance to people like Donyale Luna, good riddance.

We Shall Overcome.....In Couture! said...

Fabulous slide show! Miss Donyale was indeed fierce. It's a shame that she had so many internal demons. A wasted talent.

Anita said...

Really cruel comments, anonymous. You obviously haven't read much about this woman and the things she went through in her lifetime.
"Good riddance to people like Donyale Luna" - man, that is so harsh. I hope her daughter never comes across that comment.

Anonymous said...

@ Anita

On the contrary, I have read enough about to this woman; maybe more than I needed to know.

She is not the only one who has been through hard times in life so to justify her choice to deny her race makes no sense. We can't keep making excuses; we have to take responsibility. If I had a daughter, I would never tell her to look up to a confused woman like this who was too ashamed and disgraced to have black skin.No! No!

Divalocity said...

I wish someone could find pictures of Bethann Hardison in her day as a fashion model. I'd really love to see those pictures. I guess I'll keep searching for them.

Jlola said...

I agree 100% with anonymous's comments and actually wanted to make the same statement. Why do we uphold such figures? This woman claimed to be every race except black-which clearly she is. Afrobella had an interesting commentary on her: http://afrobella.com/index.php?s=luna

Brigitte said...

@Anon: I'm not sure why it's necessary to even brought up OJ in relation to Donyale. I know more black people who don't support him than do. Black folks don't all share one mind and opinion after all. We're a pretty diverse lot.

I can understand completely why someone who not be interested in DL because of her indifference to racial matters and her denial of her own racial lineage but that is also what makes her interesting to some people.

Imagining what was going on in the mind of a person that clearly hated herself is fascinating to some people the way examining the movements of drug addled pop stars is fascinating to others. I don't think it's fair or accurate to accuse people who are curious about DL's life and career of "worshiping" her either.

@Divalocity "I wish someone could find pictures of Bethann Hardison in her day as a fashion model. I'd really love to see those pictures."

I'm always looking for pics of her too. The ones I usually come across are so small and I rarely find pics of her on the runway.