Spencer Tracy and Myrna Loy for Whipsaw, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Ted Allan, American, 1910 - 1993


1935, printed 1981

Gelatin silver print

Overall: 20 × 16 in. (50.8 × 40.6 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: The John Kobal Foundation Collection; Purchased through the Mrs. Harvey P. Hood W'18 Fund



Place Made: United States, North America


20th century

Object Name


Research Area


Not on view


Photographs from film sets brought Hollywood’s stars one step closer to their adoring fans. Seductive glimpses of actors, cameramen, and directors at work provided a sense of being close to the action. Widely circulated in the press, these photographs served as reminders of the "magic" created by the movies—and, at times, revealed the artifice behind their production as well.

Most of these images were created during a break in filming, and actors posed for the photographer as if in the middle of a scene. Some, such as the print of Spencer Tracy and Myrna Loy in Whipsaw, actually show filming in progress. The photographer, Ted Allan, probably asked for a pause in the action in order to take his shot.

From the 2022 exhibition Photographs from Hollywood’s Golden Era: The John Kobal Foundation Collection, curated by Michael Hartman, Jonathan Little Cohen Associate Curator of American Art and Katherine W. Hart, former Senior Curator of Collections and Barbara C. & Harvey P. Hood 1918 Curator of Academic Programming

Exhibition History

Photographs from Hollywood's Golden Era: The John Kobal Foundation Collection, Katherine Hart, Sol LeWitt and Class of '67 Galleries, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover New Hampshire, February 19 - May 21, 2022.

Publication History

Robert Dance, Glamour of the Gods, Photographs from the John Kobal Foundation, Göttingen, Germany: Steidl, 2008, illustration page 155.


John Kobal Foundation Limited, London, England; sold to present collection, 2019.

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