David's Pics

From movie legend Buster Keaton to striking Japanese prints, discover our International Sales Manager's top pics and clips in the archive 

1. What is your role at Bridgeman?

I head up the international sales team at our office in London. My role is to support our account managers in developing relationships with clients and distributors worldwide.

I also have direct responsibility for our sales across Scandinavia, Portugal, Spain and the Netherlands, so if you are in any of those countries and you contact Bridgeman, you'll most likely receive a reply from me.

 

2. What do you love most about the job?

What I most love about the job mirrors what I most love about living in London: the opportunity to interact with people from all across the globe. The Bridgeman collection is so diverse, it's fascinating to see how our international clients are inspired by our images and footage in such varied ways.

 

3. What misconceptions do clients most commonly have about the archive?

Although we have an unparallelled archive of fine art, Bridgeman Images isn't just paintings and sculpture, and isn't just British art, either! There is a wealth of photography, artefacts and oddities from all over the world available for licensing, as well as the growing footage collection that complements our stills archive perfectly.

Also, clients often don't realise that we have dedicated, highly experienced researchers in-house, ready to run research lists, and as part of that service we can source additional material not currently available, so it's always worth giving us a call or emailing us if you don't find what you need online.

 

David Price-Hughes, International Sales Manager
David Price-Hughes, International Sales Manager

 

 

American actor Buster Keaton (1895 - 1966) / Photo © DILTZ / Bridgeman Images
American actor Buster Keaton (1895 - 1966) / Photo © DILTZ / Bridgeman Images

 

 

 

 

Buster Keaton

Buster Keaton: movie legend, style icon and my personal hero. This photo was taken around the time Keaton made what he later called "the worst mistake of my career": giving up the creative control he had at his own movie studio and signing with MGM.

The stricter studio system at MGM stifled Keaton's creativity and effectively ended his career. Despite the Californian sunniness of this photograph, I find it incredibly sad: sitting next to a (somewhat sinister) puppet decked out in Keaton's trademark costume, the real Keaton seems broken and resigned.

 

Poster Art

I have a real weakness for twentieth-century poster art, and this poster by Vadim Volikov combines a Cyrillic slogan, clean lines and flat colours with another of my weaknesses: skiing. I also know from personal experience how difficult it can be to track down the estates of artists from the Soviet Union.

Bridgeman licenses artistic copyright on behalf of artists' estates represented by the Gamborg Collection, making the whole process of licensing graphic art like this much more straightforward.

 

Youth, Go Skiing!, 1954, Marina Uspenskaya (1925-2007) / Gamborg Collection / Bridgeman Images
Youth, Go Skiing!, 1954, Marina Uspenskaya (1925-2007) / Gamborg Collection / Bridgeman Images

 

 

The American Comic Strip 2 / Creative Arts Television / Bridgeman Footage
The American Comic Strip 2 / Creative Arts Television / Bridgeman Footage

 

Comic Books

As any comic book fan will tell you, comics were long seen as fluff for children with no artistic value. Well before Art Spiegelman's "Maus" won the Pulitzer Prize, and before blockbuster superhero franchises enjoyed financial and critical success on TV and in the cinema, this clip from a 1978 documentary looks at comic book art with a serious eye and treats its writers and illustrators as artists.

Many of the people interviewed are no longer alive, so hearing the late, great Will Eisner speak about sequential art whilst watching him sketch panels of "The Spirit" in his studio is an absolute treat for a comic nerd. This is one of a number of pieces of footage in the archive that give a real insight into artists and their working methods, and this is my favourite. 

 

 

Kuniyoshi

I spend my Tuesday evenings at night school learning Japanese so I am pleased that Bridgeman is so strong in Japanese and other non-western art, including the work of Utagawa Kuniyoshi, one of the greatest artistic masters of the nineteenth century.

This striking image comes from his series "Stories of Courageous Generals of the Provinces of Echigo and Kai" and shows the courageous General Masakiyo stepping on a landmine. In order to cheat his enemy of the satisfaction of killing him in battle, Masakiyo impales himself on his own sword at the same time. The explosion of the landmine seems to break the borders of the woodcut itself.

The print is visually arresting, technically daring and a little bit scary, just like most of Kuniyoshi's work! He deserves to be much more well known in the west.

 

Masakiyo blown up by a Land Mine at Kawanakajima, c.1848, Kuniyoshi, Utagawa (1798-1861) / Private Collection / Bridgeman Images
Masakiyo blown up by a Land Mine at Kawanakajima, c.1848, Kuniyoshi, Utagawa (1798-1861) / Private Collection / Bridgeman Images

 

 

Trench combat during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, 1918, WWI / Bridgeman Footage
Trench combat during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, 1918, WWI / Bridgeman Footage

 

 

 

The First World War

This newsreel of the Great War begins at a stately pace, but once the camera reaches the battlefield, the cuts become faster and faster, the footage more terrifyingly frenetic. Tanks loom large, quite literally: shot from a low angle, they come crashing through the trenches, frightening, alien and deadly.

Still photographs give some sense of the blood and horror of the First World War, but this piece of film really shows how chaotic and frightening it must have been.

 

 

 

Bloncourt

The French agency Rue des Archives has enriched the Bridgeman collection with stunning reportage photography and I am particularly drawn to the work of Haiti-born photographer Gérard Bloncourt. Bloncourt's photographs are always beautifully framed and he captures his subjects with a humanistic sensitivity and dignity, never more so than in this glowing photograph of a child staring out of the window in slum housing.

 

Enfant dans un taudis, / Photo © Gerald Bloncourt / Bridgeman Images
Enfant dans un taudis, / Photo © Gerald Bloncourt / Bridgeman Images

 


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