Baker, Josephine. (1906-1975)
Signed Photograph in an Exotic Feather Costume
Vintage matte-finish G. L. Manuel portrait of Baker in a full-length pose with outspread feather wings, a revealing jeweled dress, and large curlicue earrings, signed and inscribed in fountain pen, “An Sergent Chef Maurice Laborie, en souvenir de, Josephine Baker, 1940.” A few small tears to edges, nicely repaired from verso and otherwise in fine condition. 8 x 10.25 inches.
The feathered costume is likely from Baker's important 1930 show Paris qui remue ("Swinging Paris"), which had costume design by Paul Colin, her lover. Baker is quite scarce in signed photos of this size, and this is a particularly appealing example.
Baker was most noted as a singer, while in her early career she was a celebrated dancer. She was given the nicknames the "Black Venus" or the "Black Pearl", as well as the "Créole Goddess" in anglophone nations, while in France she has always been known in the old theatrical tradition as "La Baker."