Born 1916 as George Allen Aarons in Manhattan, New York, American photographer Slim Aarons noted for photographing socialites, jet-setters and celebrities.
At 18 years old, Aarons enlisted in the U.S. Army, worked as a photographer at West Point, and later served as a combat photographer in World War II and earned a Purple Heart.
After the war, Aarons moved to California and began photographing celebrities. In California, he shot his most praised photo, Kings of Hollywood, a 1957 New’s Year’s Eve photograph depicting Clark Gable, Van Heflin, Gary Cooper, and James Stewart relaxing at a bar in full formal wear. Aaron’s work appeared in Life, Town & Country, and Holiday magazines.
Aarons never used a stylist, or a makeup artist. He made his career out of what he called “photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places.”
In 1997, Mark Getty, the co-founder of Getty Images, visited Aarons in his home and bought Aarons’ entire archive.
Aarons died in 2006 in Montrose, New York at the age of 89.
In 2017, filmmaker Fritz Mitchell released a documentary about Aarons, called Slim Aarons: The High Life.
Here below is a collection of fabulous photos that Aarons shot classic beauties during the 1950s.
Audrey Hepburn talks with Mrs Grover Magnin (centre) and another guest at a party in San Francisco, circa 1950
Countess Elizabeth Caroline von Furstenberg-Hedringen, more casually known as Betsy von Furstenberg or ‘Madcap Betsy’, a stage and screen actress, 1951
Lauren Bacall is giving her son Stephen a good night hug, 1951
Bill Babb, Thomas Beecher, model Carolyn Phillips, Mrs Rabb and model Jean Adams are enjoying guitar music on a terrace in Acapulco, Mexico, 1952
Fleur Cowles points to photographer and designer Cecil Beaton at a New Years party, on New Yorks Park Avenue, 1952
Marilyn Monroe is sorting out her fan mail shortly after her film ‘The Asphalt Jungle’ had been released, 1952
Wearing one of her trade-mark hats gossip columnist Hedda Hopper (Elder Furry) in her Beverly Hills garden with a ‘Hedda Hopper’ rose, 1952
A young woman modelling a belted dress with pencil skirt, New York City, June 1953
Austrian actress Mara Lane lounging by the pool in a red and white striped bathing costume, Sands Hotel, Las Vegas, 1954
Hungarian actress Eva Gabor, 1954
Hungarian film actress Eva Gabor, Jamaica, 1954
Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh are enjoying a dance at a party held at James Mason’s home in Beverly Hills, 1954
American swimmer and actress Esther Williams, Florida, 1955
American swimmer and movie star Esther Williams, Florida, 1955
C. Z. Guest & Joanne Connelly, 1955
C. Z. Guest at her ocean-front estate, Florida, 1955
C. Z. Guest at her ocean-front estate, Florida, 1955
C. Z. Guest beside the pool of her ocean-front estate, Florida, 1955
C. Z. Guest with Joanne Connolly (right) beside the Grecian temple pool of her ocean-front estate, Villa Artemis, Palm Beach, Florida, 1955
Countess Dolores Von Furstenberg, 1955
Film star Joan Collins relaxes with her pink poodle on her pink bed, 1955
From left to right, the Honourable Diana Herbert, Miss Jane Sheffield and Frances Sweeney, daughter of the Duchess of Argyll, attend a debutante party for Miss Sweeney at Claridges Hotel in London, 1955
Hungarian-born film actress Eva Gabor, 1955
Model and socialite Gladys ‘Patsy’ Pulitzer, Florida, 1955
Mrs T.R. Potter and Mrs Edward Magnus (right) in the Saks of 5th Avenue dress shop, Palm Beach, Florida, 1955
Patsy Pulitzer at Palm Beach, Florida, 1955
Patsy Pulitzer boards a seaplane at the Everglades Flying Service, Palm Beach, Florida, 1955
Ursula Andress, 1955
American singer and actress Lola Albright at Richard Lawson’s penthouse in Los Angeles, California, 1956
Kay Spreckles, the fifth wife of actor Clark Gable, at a New Year’s Eve party held at the Romanoff Restaurant in Hollywood, Los Angeles, 1956
Mrs Anne Ryan (nee Evenson) wearing a sleeveless, two-piece outfit by Maurice Rentner, outside the Botanical Building in Balboa Park, San Diego, California, 1956
Mrs Christopher Ward posing in Arthur Cameron’s garden, Beverly Hills, California, 1956
Mrs John M Thornton at the Convair Astronautics division of the General Dynamics Corporation in Kearny Mesa, San Diego, California, 1956
Mrs. John A. Vietor on the beach near her cliff-top house in La Jolla, San Diego, California, October 1956
San Diego, California, October 1956
The Comtesse de Paris, 1956
French actress Capucine fanning herself at a New Years Eve party held at Romanoffs in Beverly Hills, California, 1957
Mrs William Ferguson (Margarete Anne Williams) in her wedding dress at Oak Alley, a Mississippi mansion famous for its double row of oak trees which can be seen behind her, 1957
Singer Julie London enjoying breakfast in bed at the Beverly Hills Hotel, 1957
The Duchess of Montesquiou-Fezensac in the drawing room of her chateau, Neuilly, 1957
Viscountess Harriet de Rosiere at Mougins, 1957
Athina Livanos Onassis (Tina Onassis), the first wife of Greek shipowner Aristotle Onassis is relaxing by the swimming pool aboard their yacht, the ‘Christina’ in Monte Carlo, 1958
Barbara Woolworth Hutton, 1958
Leading New York debutantes of 1958. Standing, left to right: Linda McKay Stevenson, Sandra Emerson Topping, Elizabeth Sandra Lipson Huntington, Wendy Maria Vanderbilt. Seated, left to right: Judith Allen Thompson and Alexandra Creel
Mrs Peggy Bancroft in the foyer of her Manhattan duplex, 1958
Swimsuited revellers enjoy a glass of wine outside the Carlton Hotel, Cannes, 1958
The Duchess of Buccleuch and Queensberry in the hall of Boughton House, Kettering, England, April 1958
In top hat and tails Marlene Dietrich performs at an ‘April in Paris’ ball in New York, 1959
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