Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Sepia Scenes 04-15-09: Hollywood Theatre

Sepia Scenes is hosted by Mary T, who also hosts the fabulous Ruby Tuesday.

The Hollywood Theatre is an icon in Portland. Built in 1926 in the fashion of the great movie palaces, it has remained a popular movie and concert venue in one of Portland's most active neighborhoods. I can't tell you how many times I've driven or walked by or into this theater and never really noticed the work of art that it is. I knew it was elaborate, even a bit gaudy. But until I aimed my zoom lens at it this week, I had no idea what the details looked like. And, of course, it begged for sepia!

The top piece:

One of several arched niches:

The center piece:

Middle left (duplicated on the right side, but with different figures):

Upper right side, duplicated on the left (of course, I had to play with a little half-sepia!):

This is the original marquee (photo from Oregon History Project):

Unfortunately, they've mucked it up with a big sign and more modern marquee:

Some information from the Oregon History Project:

The Hollywood was designed by the architectural firm of Bennes & Herzog of Portland. The style has been described as “Byzantine,” but is better characterized as Spanish Colonial Revival. It was constructed of poured concrete, but the entrance was topped by an elaborate tower of polychrome (colored) terra cotta with arched niches flanked by turned pillars. The two-story street side of the theater was capped by roof tiles that carried out the Spanish Colonial theme. Most theaters of this size were located in downtown areas, but the Hollywood was sited in a neighborhood shopping district that was well served by both streetcar and automobile.


Jientje said...

That is GORGEOUS!!! What a great building, and indeed, PERFECT for a Sepia!!It reminds me of the big houses in the centre of Antwerp, they would make perfect sepia's too! Such a pity they put such a horribe big sign on it! Eww!

I love the half sepia( I am addicted to half sepia!)

Beth F said...

Awesome series. Thanks so much for sharing them. And Jientje is right -- perfect for sepia.

Jack said...

Amazing detail! I love that you choose to shoot this series of photos in sepia :)

Kahshe Cottager said...

What an amazing building ... I can not believe the architectural detail! It suits Sepia Scenes very well!

kden said...

I hate when they mess around with older buildings to give them a new feel. Just leave them alone! Your shots are wonderful and full of old time detail. Thanks for sharing them.

Annie Jeffries said...

Oh! I am so excited. I'm going to be in Portland in late June. I am so going to search out this theatre. I can't believe that all this detail appears on basically what is just the corner of the building. Outstanding. Love the blue highlighting of the final detail picture.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful details.

Isn't that always the case,we hardly notice what's under our nose?

Glad you finally took time to really see this theater.

Karen said...

Oh wow! I love the detail showing up in the sepia. Thanks for sharing.

Ralph said...

Gaudy is as gaudy does. The details really make this theater come alive. When it was built, going to the 'moving pictures' (as my Grandpa said) was an event. The grandeur of this place is what the movie goers expected - and they were not disapointed in the day...

dot said...

What a gorgeous building and just perfect for sepia! Makes me wonder how long it took to build.

GalleryJuana said...

Your photos really do it justice!

Carletta said...

I'm glad you gave in to the begging - it has some wonderful detail that you captured very well.
I love the half sepia shot - it works well here.
I almost wish you hadn't shown the original with the modern additions - they should certainly do something about that. :)

Unknown said...

What an extravagent building! It looks beautiful rendered in sepia.

kayerj said...

beautiful building-tacky "improvements"

Stop by to see mysepia scene

T. Mininni-Totin said...

You would never think that such beautiful detail was tucked into this facade. The modern structures attached to it and surrounding it hide it. Your photographs really do it justice, especially the bits of color added here and there.

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I've been retired since November, 2008. I've been spending lots of time taking photos, singing, and writing. Currently working on a historical fiction novel.. I highly recommend retirement!