There’s something extremely engaging and heartening about this re-print of a Vanity Fair article, written by Brooke Hayward, of a conversation she had in ’01 with ex-husband Dennis Hopper and daughter Marin about their life together from the early to late ’60s. It’s hard to pin down exactly why it feels so levitational but it is.
“Double Standard,” 1961, silver print, Dennis Hopper collection, Los Angeles.
I found their recollection of Hopper’s heroism during the 1961 Bel Air fire especially moving. Brooke tells Marin about how “your dad ran up and down Stone Canyon saving everybody.” And then Hopper recalls “a double-page picture of me in Paris Match — ‘Unidentified man, hero of Bel Air fire’ — with a Juan Gris in one hand and a Picasso in the other, coming out of this woman’s house.
“Everybody had abandoned this house with the roof on fire, and I kept thinking, Somebody’s in there. I ran in, and this woman was sitting on the toilet. I said, ‘You’ve got to leave.’ ‘No, no, I’m staying, I’m staying. I don’t care.’ Anyway, I got her out of there, and that’s when, I guess, they took the picture!”