Artists Behind The Artists

While great talent is born, it is also made. The artistry of Carol Carlisle and Leopold Allen, working in two very different realms, shows how great artists performances and creations rely upon and spring from the artistry of others.

In an era when photography was still suspect as an art form, Carol Carlisle was the editor of one of photography’s most influential magazines. The artists, their materials and techniques were given exposure, recognition, and prominence as a result of her eye, vision, and prescience. Many now-famous (but then not-so-famous) photographers, such as Cartier Bresson, were saved from obscurity as a result of her editor’s art. See a sample of her collection here.

While ballet performances rely foremost on the majestic dancing and soaring music which pair to create exquisite art on stage, the atmospherics of ballet are made equally by those who create the look and feel of the characters in each performance. For this make-up, wigs, and costumes are central to making a specific performance or season distinctive, memorable and historic. Leopold Allen created most of the make-up, wigs (and sometimes) the shoes and costume elements for the American Ballet Theatre for nearly two decades. Some of the most memorable performances were made so by his behind-the scenes contributions, as seen here.