Elsa Bannister (played by RIta Hayworth)
Oil on Canvas
48 X 72 inches
2008
 
This painting is based on a stunning close up of Rita Hayworth with a slightly visible reflection behind her. Orson Welles did not want any close ups in this scene, since he felt it would break up the speed and cinematic continuity. However, he was forced by Columbia Studios' tyranical production chief Harry Cohn, to include these stills, to cash in on their star Rita Hayworth. Welles had already enraged Cohn by cutting Hayworth's hair and dying it blonde without permission. Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth were married when filming began, yet their relationship had disintegrated by the time the film was finished, much like the the fate of Hayworth's auburn hair, which had been her identifying trademark, and the destruction of the mirror maze itself. the fact that it was Rita Hayworth at the center of the mirror maze was incredibly significant. Hayworth, whose erased Latin identity fell victim to studio created Hollywood identity (she was born Margarita Carmen Cansino). She was a commodity, fabricated according to theories and mechanisms of spectatorship, performance, publicity, promotion, and commodification that are well known to have produced in her a devastating and conflicted sense of lost identity.  Putting Hayworth at the center of the mirror maze, was not just about the indiscernability of the real and the virtual within the film, but it also posed the question of whether the so called “real” Rita Hayworth, was herself an illusion, and only alive as an image. 
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Oil on Canvas
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48 X 72 inches
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2008 
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This painting is based on a stunning close up of Rita Hayworth with a slightly visible reflection behind her. Orson Welles did not want any close ups in this scene, since he felt it would break up the speed and cinematic continuity. However, he was forced by Columbia Studios' tyranical production chief Harry Cohn, to include these stills, to cash in on their star Rita Hayworth. Welles had already enraged Cohn by cutting Hayworth's hair and dying it blonde without permission. Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth were married when filming began, yet their relationship had disintegrated by the time the film was finished, much like the the fate of Hayworth's auburn hair, which had been her identifying trademark, and the destruction of the mirror maze itself. the fact that it was Rita Hayworth at the center of the mirror maze was incredibly significant. Hayworth, whose erased Latin identity fell victim to studio created Hollywood identity (she was born Margarita Carmen Cansino). She was a commodity, fabricated according to theories and mechanisms of spectatorship, performance, publicity, promotion, and commodification that are well known to have produced in her a devastating and conflicted sense of lost identity.&nbsp; Putting Hayworth at the center of the mirror maze, was not just about the indiscernability of the real and the virtual within the film, but it also posed the question of whether the so called &ldquo;real&rdquo; Rita Hayworth, was herself an illusion, and only alive as an image.&nbsp; 
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