July 02, 1934 Time Magazine
Nobody in Venice last week seemed to know how the trouble started but there it was—a glittering portrait of Cinemactress Marion Davies by Tade Styka, hanging, slambang, in the vestibule of the American Pavilion at the 10th Biennial Art Exhibition. Mrs. Juliana R. Force, the Whitney Museum's energetic director, thought it was so strange that she threatened to withdraw, crate and ship back to the US the entire Whitney exhibit (101 pictures) unless the unauthorized Davies portrait was removed.
In Venice nobody knew what to do or say. Count Volpi di Misurata, Exhibition President, was in Brussels and said nothing. Exhibition officials, nervous as tomcats, awaited the return of Count Volpi to settle what threatened to become an international incident. Professor Maraini (Exhibition Secretary) did not help things along much when he remarked of the Davies portrait: "It's no worse than some of the other American exhibits..."
US newshawks in Rome put odds & ends together and came to this conclusion: William Randolph Hearst, anxious to have Miss Davies' portrait exhibited, offered to pay the shipping costs of the entire Whitney collection if the picture were included. Mrs. Force declined his offer. Thereupon Mr. Hearst sent the picture alone to Italy where a Hearstling approached US Ambassador Breckinridge Long to see what could be done about having it exhibited in Venice. When Ambassador Long decided not to use his good offices in Mr. Hearst's behalf, the Hearst man went directly to Count Volpi, finally got permission to hang the portrait in the pavilion vestibule where it would presumably not interfere with the authorized US exhibit.
In the meantime last week Mr. Hearst, son John, Miss Davies, William Collier Jr. and Dorothy Mackaiil arrived in London after a leisurely trip through Spain. Correspondents flocked about Miss Davies, quizzed her about her portrait. Said she: "I cannot understand what it all means. So far as I know the people running the show asked that my portrait be sent."
A very special thank you to Karen L. Marshall, from the non-profit organization Save Venice for allowing the EMPRESS OF FASHION blog use of her photography. As you can see, her work is truly amazing. Miss Lambert thought so too and was a avid collector of Karen L. Marshall's photography during her life.