Over thirty years since they first duetted on Islands in the Stream, Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers received a Grammy nomination this week for their latest duet, You Can’t Make Old Friends. The video for the song is very sweet, with both Kenny and Dolly reminiscing about their friendship, and I have to admit having a lot of goodwill towards the new song. So many of my childhood memories are tied up with karaoke performances of Islands in the Stream, and You Can’t Make Old Friends has enough echoes of the previous Dolly/Kenny duet to make me feel quite nostalgic whilst also being different enough to stand on its own merits.
On our December newsletter, we were very pleased to announce that Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche, which some of our clients will remember as Bianconero, has returned to the akg-images collection after an absence of three years. Looking through the images from Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche gave me something of the same thrill as I got from watching the Dolly and Kenny music video. It was wonderful welcoming back old friends into the archive, fantastic vintage black-and-white photographs that I knew incredibly well from my time as a picture researcher here and it was wonderful selecting old favourites for the newsletter! I chose them myself and knew exactly the photos I wanted: Kirk Douglas’ handstand, Silvana Pampanini swimming and smiling, and Toshiro Mifune in a gondola. The Mifune shot is my absolute favourite from the Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche collection. Everything about it, from Mifune’s white clothes against the dark gondola, to the expression on the gondoliers face, to the hazy view of Venice in the background, makes – for me – a perfect picture.
But, just as the Dolly and Kenny duet isn’t justnostalgia and offers something new and different, so does our new collaboration with Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche. Excitingly, as well as the return of old friends into the archive, akg has been supplied many more images for licensing worldwide, so there are plenty of new friends for me and you to get to know. I have chosen a few of the images that were new to me but which might soon rival the shot of Mifune in a gondola for my choice as favourite Archivio Cameraphoto Epoche gem: Robert Rauschenberg on a balcony, Warren Beatty in a cardigan and an absolutely beautiful portrait of Kirk Douglas.