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Pearl Bailey, Birdland, NYC, 1950

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Herman Leonard, American, (March 6, 1923–August 14, 2010)
Pearl Bailey, Birdland, NYC, 1950, 1950
Gelatin silver print
14 in. x 11 in. (35.56 cm x 27.94 cm)

Object Type: Photography
Technique: Gelatin silver Process
Credit Line: Gift of Diana L. Ho, class of 1971
Accession Number: 2011.4.1

At the age of 15, Pearly Bailey started her career as a performer, leaving her home and school. Known for her sultry voice, she was an American singer and actress who performed in nightclubs, cafés, and theatres. This photo of Pearl Bailey, from a performance at Birdland, a famous jazz club in New York City, is just one example of Herman Leonard’s ability to turn the performance of jazz into visual art. Bailey’s form and expression capture the sentiment of the jazz era. This image provides a record of a unique moment in jazz history. -Marie Angeles '13

Signed by Herman Leonard

Object Description
Black-and-white photograph of iconic jazz singer Pearl Bailey performing, gracefully gesturing, illuminated against a solid black background.

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