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Yale Joel

MIRROR MIRROR

Online Show

May 4 – June 27, 2020

Yale Joel Collar-Tugger

COLLAR-TUGGER

Yale Joel Hat-Tilter

HAT-TILTER

Yale Joel Molar-Checker

MOLAR-CHECKER

Yale Joel Eye-Prober

EYE-PROBER

Yale Joel Self-Admirer

SELF-ADMIRER

Yale Joel Mouth-Dauber

MOUTH-DAUBER

Yale Joel Pants-Hoister

PANTS-HOISTER

Yale Joel Eyebrow-Smoother

EYEBROW-SMOOTHER

Yale Joel Lens-Polisher

LENS-POLISHER

Yale Joel Chin-Tweaker

CHIN-TWEAKER

Yale Joel Lip-Moistener

LIP-MOISTENER

Yale Joel Nose-Blower

NOSE-BLOWER

Yale Joel Hat-Setter

HAT-SETTER

Yale Joe Skirt-Twister

SKIRT-TWISTER

Yale Joel Mote-Seeker

MOTE-SEEKER

Yale Joel Seam-Straightener

SEAM-STRAIGHTENER

Yale Joel Shoelace-Tier

SHOELACE-TIER

Yale Joel behind the trick mirror, Lowes Criterion Theater, NYC 1946

Yale Joel behind the trick mirror, Lowes Criterion Theater, NYC 1946

Press Release

In November 1946 LIFE Magazine photographer Yale Joel set up a two-way mirror in the lobby of the Lowes Criterion Theater in Times Square where the film Dark Mirror was playing. Unbeknownst to the public Yale Joel was concealed on the other side with his camera. What he captured was a parade of humanity primping, preening, and poking at their reflections. Nineteen of those photographs were published in LIFE on December 16, 1946. This online exhibiton is the first time the series has been featured in nearly 75 years.

Today's viewers will be amused at both the expressions on display and the period styles of dress. The intimate adjustments of makeup and clothing will also remind us of our own daily routines in front of the mirror. Anyone who has ever been caught examining their reflection will share a sympathetic laugh with the men and women captured by Joel’s camera. In this age of the selfie and personal YouTube channels, we’re often led to believe that we live in a uniquely self-obsessed time. Joel’s photographs remind us however, that people have always been captivated by their own image. 

 

All photographs ©Yale Joel. Courtesy of The Picture Collection Inc. All Rights Reserved.