Natural-Born Shooter

Not even a world war stopped this artist

This Friday, a diverse collection of images in the exhibit Tony Vaccaro: From War To Beauty at the Monroe Gallery of Photography gives Santa Feans a glimpse into the life of the 94-year-old photographer from scenes of World War II to commercial fashion shots, and beyond.

This artist's lens has captured some of the most famous humans ever—think Sophia Loren, Pablo Picasso and Marilyn Monroe. But some of his first forays into photography were spent documenting World War II. Drafted at 21 years old, Vaccaro carried a 35-mm camera through the trenches of Europe and used innovative techniques to develop his film: Patiently waiting for nightfall, the artist-soldier used the tools available to him in the middle of a war. "I would go over the ruins of a village and try to locate where a camera shop might have been," he says. "So, in the ruins I could find developer and the things which you need." Chemicals in hand, Vaccaro used helmets as developing trays; developer, water, hypo and more water to rinse; four helmets in succession in the pitch black. "From Normandy to Berlin, that's how I developed my pictures," he tells SFR.

Vaccaro had a long and illustrious career in photography after the war as well, including time working for magazines like Life, Harper's Bazaar and Newsweek. His work took him to amazing places like the Nile River in Egypt and to photograph fabled architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

But which photo stands out to Vaccaro as his crowning achievement? Georgia O'Keeffe, he says. He asked the painter to take her work outdoors. "It's one of the great photographs of my life, yes—I have it right in front of me—she's in profile, and all you have is black, her face and then the great color of that painting," he says. "The greatest [memory] was Georgia O'Keeffe, and coming to Santa Fe, and it was just Georgia and Tony for about a week or more. It was superb, really." (Maria Egolf-Romero)

Tony Vaccaro: From War to Beauty Opening Reception
5 pm Friday June 30. Free.
Monroe Gallery of Photography,
112 Don Gaspar Ave.,

Under Fire: The Untold Story of Private First Class Tony Vaccaro Screening
3:45 pm Saturday July 1. Free.
Center for Contemporary Arts Cinematheque,
1050 Old Pecos Trail,

Reunited and it Feels So Good

Generally speaking, reunion shows come when bands need to pay the bills or get some crazy offer. For Americana/folk trio Hot Honey, however, it was more of a personal decision. “This reunion is special on so many levels,” member Paige Barton tells us. “The music itself is central and exciting, but this whole thing is mostly about a group of people missing each other, missing this place and needing an excuse to get together.” There you have it—turns out it’s not just killer vocal harmonies or beautiful instrumentation that makes Hot Honey so good; it’s love. (Alex De Vore)

Hot Honey:
6 pm Thursday June 29. Free.
Second Street Brewery (Original),
1814 Second St.,

Fuck Betty

Full Speed Veronica bassist Sarah Meadows is making some pretty lofty promises. “I know there’s been a zillion incarnations [of this band],” she says, “but only these days does it consist of two founding members of The Hollis Wake writing new stuff together and doing a few classic HW tunes.” See, the pop-rock brilliance of The Hollis Wake was not quite appreciated in its time by as many as it should have been, which we lament to this day, but if ever there were a chance to find out what you missed, it’s now. Throw in punk rock undertones and some seriously excellent riffs and melodies, and we can bank on Meadows being totally right. (ADV)

Full Speed Veronica:
9:30 pm Saturday July 1. $5.
The Underground,
200 W San Francisco St.


We get it, you guys—it’s hot out, you maybe have a couple of kids whining about how summer is boring and the nights are long—you need to fix all your problems with fireworks. How many other things can you think of that are still enjoyed eight bajillion years after they were invented? Not many. And with this year’s move to the Santa Fe Place Mall, fewer residents will have to deal with the sound and traffic, meaning you can feel good about controlled explosions, and you’ll be the hero of the day. Just think about the Declaration of Independence a little bit while you’re at it … otherwise you’re not much of a patriot. (ADV)

Fourth of July Fireworks Show:
8 pm Tuesday July 4. Free.
Santa Fe Place Mall,
4250 Cerrillos Road, 473-4253

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