Monday, January 19, 2009

When art goes to the movies

Emil Jean Kosa Jr. worked for the movies as an art director and most famously as a scene painter on glass for the elaborate shots that are now achieved by computer. He won an Academy Award in 1965 for his work on Cleopatra but it is for the amazing image of the Statue of Liberty in the final shot of the 1968 version of Planet of the Apes that he is best remembered. Kosa’s other enduring contribution was his 1933 design for the 20th Century Fox logo. As for his own art work, it tended to traditional landscapes and portraits (although he did study under the non-objective painter Frank Kupka) and can be found in some public collections in the United States.
Images: Top Kosa’s Statue of Liberty rearing out of the beach. Middle, A glass shot with mountains and buildings added for the Steve McQueen vehicle The Sand Pebbles. Bottom the logo for 20th Century Fox.