small 4x5"image, a probable contact print, vintage image 1920s, VF condition-- from Edwin Bower Hessers studio album, image has backing of the original album-- this was a small ring bound album that contained samples of the photographer's work. Hesser was a well known Hollywood photographer of the 1920s silent era, known for his figure studies and a series of figure magazines he produced of young actress's of the time.
Edwin Bower Hesser (1893-1963) was a famous Broadway, New York and silent era Hollywood photographer active from 1913-1945. Hesser belonged to the generation of photographers who saw the marriage of image and performance as the future of the art. Born in New Jersey and apprenticed in photography in New York City, Hesser became smitten with the potentials of the art form. Prior to World War I he toured Northeastern theaters with J. Townsend Russell in a series of 'picture readings' illustrating Longfellow's 'Tales of a Wayside Inn.
By 1923 he realized that the real money in photography lay in periodical publication, not in the service of film publicity offices or stage PR men. He saw a particularly opportunity in the subject which the 1920s stage explored with great daring, but the screen, even in pre-code days, could not pursue: female undress. Throughout the late 1920s, he published EDWIN BOWER HESSER'S ARTS MONTHLY, and other titles, exploiting the association betweens art and nudity, and sold it to an anonymous readership of 'art students.'