Saturday 13 December 2008

In Memoriam: Bettie Page 1923-2008

And before the weeping love goddesses and adoring cupids have even had a chance to dry their eyes, the death in hospital at age 85 has been announced of the fabulous Bettie Page. The obituary writers at the LA Times seem to be working overtime for the Holidays.

‘In November 1957, Time carries a brief obituary for Dr Wilhelm Reich, ‘once-famed psychoanalyst, associate, and follower of Sigmund Freud, founder of the Wilhelm Reich Foundation, lately better known for unorthodox sex and energy theories’. As if to mark this loss, Superman’s virile presence disappears from the nation’s television screens after his series is dropped from the schedules in 1957, while ‘Queen of the Pinup’ Bettie Page abandons her career as a New York glamour model and vanishes without trace. Not surprisingly, the nation’s soaring birth rate lapses into a steady decline.’

From ‘1957 Contact With Space’ in Welcome to Mars.

And yet that smile of hers will remain forever with us: unfathomable, unreadable and magnificently innocent. Happy Christmas, Bettie.

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