Baron George Hoyningen-Huene (September 4, 1900 – September 12, 1968) was a seminal fashion photographer of the 1920s and 1930s. He was born in Russia to Baltic German and American parents and spent his working life in France, England and the United States.
Born in Saint Petersburg, Russia on September 4, 1900, Hoyningen-Huene was the only son of Baron Barthold Theodor Hermann (Theodorevitch) von Hoyningen-Huene (1859-1942), a Baltic nobleman, military officer and lord of Navesti manor (near Võhma), and his wife, Emily Anne "Nan" Lothrop (1860-1927), a daughter of George Van Ness Lothrop, an American minister to Russia. (The couple was married in Detroit, Michigan, in 1888.) He had two sisters. Helen (died 1976) became a fashion designer in France and the United States, using the name Helen de Huene. Elizabeth (1891-1973), also known as Betty, also became a fashion designer (using the name Mme. Yteb in the 1920s and 1930s) and married, first, Baron Wrangel, and, second, Lt. Col. Charles Norman Buzzard, a British Army officer.
During the Russian Revolution, the Hoyningen-Huenes fled to first London, and later Paris. By 1925 George had already worked his way up to chief of photography of the French Vogue where he was mentor to up-and-coming photographers including François Tuefferd. In 1931 he met Horst, the future photographer, who became his lover and frequent model and traveled to England with him that winter. While there, they visited photographer Cecil Beaton, who was working for the British edition of Vogue. In 1931, Horst began his association with Vogue, publishing his first photograph in the French edition of Vogue in November of that year.
In 1935 Hoyningen-Huene moved to New York City where he did most of his work for Harper's Bazaar. He published two art books on Greece and Egypt before relocating to Hollywood, where he earned a living by shooting glamorous portraits for the film industry.
Hoyningen-Huene worked in huge studios and with whatever lighting worked best. Beyond fashion, he was a master portraitist of Hollywood stars to other celebrities.
He also worked in Hollywood in various capacities in the film industry, working closely with George Cukor, notably as special visual and color consultant for the 1954 Judy Garland movie A Star Is Born. He served a similar role for the 1957 film Les Girls, which starred Kay Kendall and Mitzi Gaynor, the Sophia Loren film Heller in Pink Tights and The Chapman Report.
In 1952 his cousin Baron Ernst Lyssardt von Hoyningen-Huene, whom he had adopted, married Nancy Oakes, the daughter of the gold mining tycoon Sir Harry Oakes. That union lasted until 1956 and produced one son Baron Alexander von Hoyningen-Huene, also known as Sasha.
He died at 68 years of age in Los Angeles.
- Egypt by [Baron] George Hoyningen-Huene with text by George Steindorff. J. J. Augustin Publisher, 1943
- Hellas: A Tribute to Classical Greece 64 Photographs by Hoyningen-Huene, with text by Hugh Chisholm. J. J. Augustin Publishers, 1943
- Eye for Elegance - George Hoyningen-Huene (exhibition catalogue) International Center of Photography and Congreve Publishing Company, 1980
- The Photographic Art of Hoyningen-Huene by William Ewing, George Hoyningen-Huene. Thames & Hudson, 1998
Miscellaneous crew - filmography (1960s) (1950s)
- The Adventures of Hajji Baba (1954) color consultant
- A Star Is Born (1954) special color design advisor
- Bhowani Junction (1956) color consultant
- Les Girls (1957) color coordinator
- It Started in Naples (1960) title designer
- Heller in Pink Tights (1960) color coordinator and technical advisor
- Let's Make Love (1960) color coordinator
... also known as The Billionaire ... also known as The Millionaire
- A Breath of Scandal (1960) color advisor
... also known as Olympia (Italy)
- The Chapman Report (1962) color consultant - designer, title designer
- A New Kind of Love (1963) color coordinator - designer
Costume designer - filmography
- A Breath of Scandal (1960)
... also known as Olympia (Italy)
- George Hoyningen-Huene : Fotografo (Spanish language)
- Exhibition Shadow and Light at Staley-Wise Gallery
- George Hoyningen-Huene at aenigma
- Location of the Navesti manor in Governorate of Livonia
- Barthold von Hoyningen-Huene in Baltic Nobility Handbook[permanent dead link]
- Collection Guide, George Hoyningen-Huene Photographs, Houghton Library, Harvard University