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Mailander Photo Collection

May 18, 2015 In the News, Research, Reviews, Stanford

The Revs Institute Releases the Photo Collection of Rudy Mailander

Some 40,000 Historically Significant Images will be Added to the Revs Digital Library

 

(Naples, FL) May 19, 2015 — Rudy Mailander was a busy man. Although his long career in the automotive world covered writing, publicity and business affairs, it is his motor sports photography that endures. One of the greatest photographers of the early sports car revival in Europe, Mailander traveled the race circuits extensively from 1950 – 1955, capturing the action and the people – who always seemed to respond singularly to his camera lens.  The Revs Institute for Automotive Research, Inc. announced that today the Mailander photo collection is being released to the Revs Digital Library. There it will be in the searchable database of the Institute’s extensive digital library at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA. (https://revslib.stanford.edu)

This release will add some 40,000 images to the library, which is already rich with tens of thousands of photos from eleven different collections. Mailander’s photos, which were part of the Karl Ludvigsen collection, are mainly 35 mm black and whites that covered everything from races to motor shows to rallies.  Whether it was the Monte Carlo Grand Prix, the Geneva Auto Show or the production line of Mercedes-Benz’ 300 SL, Mailander was there with his Leica camera, recording the event.

Miles Collier, president of The Revs Institute for Automotive Research, Inc., points out that, “Collections like Rudy Mailander’s are critical in adding still more depth to the Revs Digital Library. He was at so many important events, and the quality of his work gives life to these occasions, which adds to them for both the researcher and the enthusiast.”

Rodolfo Mailander was born in Milan, Italy in 1923, but as a young man traveled extensively throughout Europe, becoming fluent in several languages which greatly facilitated his photo journalism career. After World War II, while living in Stuttgart, Germany, he began working with the well-known magazine Auto Motor und Sport. His work caught the attention of Robert Braunschweig, editor of Switzerland’s Automobil Revue.  He asked Mailander to do a story about Modena, Italy’s Via Amelia, were the likes of Ferrari and Maserati were located. The story was well received and led to Mailander spending the next half-decade covering major automotive events in Europe.

In 1955, Mailander ended his journalistic career and went to work for Mercedes-Benz in Stuttgart. He would later go on to become a major executive with Fiat in Turin. During those years he came to know a young GI in the U.S. Army’s signal corps. It was Karl Ludvigsen, who had been technical editor of Sports Cars Illustrated, before being drafted into the army. Their friendship would last until Mailander’s death in 2008, and along the way Ludvigsen’s acquired the photographer’s collection.  Those images became the photographic core of Ludvigsen’s archives, which The Revs Institute procured in 2011.

“Rudy Mailander’s and Karl Ludvigsen’s meticulous care and attention to this collection shines through in the quality of his negatives,” explains Scott George, vice president and curator of The Revs Institute. “Each and every one is eminently usable. His close relationships with drivers and engineers–helped by his multilingual abilities–also show in the intimacy of his images.”

The Mailander Collection is now part of the Institute’s extensive library and the searchable database of the Revs Digital Library at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA.  Visit the site to view the images online at:  https://revslib.stanford.edu.

The Revs Institute for Automotive Research is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization and is recognized for its extensive library, outstanding periodical collections that date from the 1890’s and its photograph and manuscript collections on all things automotive.  The Naples, Florida automotive research institute has become a major resource for historians, researchers, writers and academics.

For information please visit www.revsinstitute.org or call (239) 687-REVS.

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Images/descriptions available at: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/81sjjnzkso9h04j/AADjE5H9jPo9lSGVuXPNJa3Za?dl=0

For more information, please contact: Maria Writesel – SUCCESS communications inc.

Maria@success-communications.com (617) 962-6856, east coast, or John Lamm – rtlamm@gmail.com, west coast.

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Close competitive action in the final race of the 1950 Nation’s Motorcycle Grand Prix in Monza, Italy captured by Mailander.

Mailander’s lens zooms in on the unique HWM-Alta, car number 16, shown here in the pits at the June 4, 1950 Swiss Grand Prix Formula Two race held in Bremgarten.  Driven and constructed by George Abecassis, originally for the Formula Two class, the HWM later became eligible to compete in Grand Prix events.

Mailander’s lens zooms in on the unique HWM-Alta, car number 16, shown here in the pits at the June 4, 1950 Swiss Grand Prix Formula Two race held in Bremgarten. Driven and constructed by George Abecassis, originally for the Formula Two class, the HWM later became eligible to compete in Grand Prix events.

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The young Stirling Moss shines in the 500cc Cooper he drove to victory at the 1950 Monaco Grand Prix Formula Three race.

All things automotive caught the eye of Rudy Mailander, who shows, from a tree top perspective, the hustle and bustle of the Turin Motor Show display floor in 1950.

All things automotive caught the eye of Rudy Mailander, who shows, from a balcony perspective, the hustle and bustle of the Turin Motor Show display floor in 1950.

The Porsche 356 display at the Geneva Motor Show in 1955 catches Mailander’s eye and lens.

The Porsche 356 display at the Geneva Motor Show in 1955 catches Mailander’s eye and lens.

The symmetry, unique layout, and perfect people positioning of this Fiat 600 display photograph demonstrates the professional caliber of Mailander’s work.

The symmetry, unique layout, and perfect people positioning of this Fiat 600 display photograph demonstrates the professional caliber of Mailander’s work.

Alberto Ascari prepares for a demonstration run in a Lancia sports racer at the 1954 Racing Driver’s Course, Campione, Switzerland.

Alberto Ascari prepares for a demonstration run in a Lancia D24 sports racer at the 1954 Racing Driver’s Course, Campione, Switzerland.

Mailander’s coverage of the automobile includes amazing circa 1950’s factory industrial scenes like the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL mass production line.

Mailander’s coverage of the automobile includes amazing circa 1950’s factory industrial scenes like the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL mass production line.

Brilliant use of natural geographic settings characterizes much of Mailander’s work, as is the case with this wonderful image of the 1954 Porsche 356 Press Car emerging from a rocky tunnel in Monte Carlo.

Brilliant use of natural geographic settings characterizes much of Mailander’s work, as is the case with this wonderful image of the 1954 Porsche 356 Press Car emerging from a rocky tunnel near Monte Carlo.

Crossing the finish line at the 1953 Monza Grand Prix, the winning Ferrari 250 MM Pininfarina Berlinetta driven by Luigi Villoresi, is portrayed perfectly by Mailander with the checkered flag waving victoriously off to the side.

Crossing the finish line in the 1953 1000 Kilometers sports car race at Italy’s Monza circuit is the winning Ferrari 250 MM Pininfarina Berlinetta driven by Luigi Villoresi, is portrayed perfectly by Mailander with the checkered flag waving victoriously off to the side.

The ability to take you right into the action, as with this image of an Alfa Romeo manipulating a controlled corner slide on the Racing Driver’s Course, in Campione, Switzerland, fueled the high demand for Mailander’s work.

The ability to take you right into the action, as with this image of an Alfa Romeo cornering on the Racing Driver’s Course, in Campione, Switzerland, fueled the high demand for Mailander’s work.

A line up of Peugeots image, at the 1952 Monte Carlo Rally, is stunning in its composition and illustrative of Mailander’s photographic flair.

A line up of Peugeots image, at the 1952 Monte Carlo Rally, is stunning in its composition and illustrative of Mailander’s photographic flair.

Mailander’s work is regarded for the way he captured the people in addition to the cars of his time.  Robert Mazon, clutching the trophy, appears to smile here specifically for Mailander’s lens at the 1952 Monaco Grand Prix.

Mailander’s work is regarded for the way he captured the people in addition to the cars of his time. Robert Mazon, clutching the 3rd place trophy, appears to smile here specifically for Mailander’s lens at the 1952 Monaco Grand Prix.

The action in the pits was oftentimes just as desirable an image as that from the track. In 1951, Mailander shows the Alfa Romeo 159, driven by Consalvo Sanesi receiving some tinkering in the pits at the French Grand Prix, Reims.

The action in the pits was oftentimes just as desirable an image as that from the track. In 1951, Mailander shows the Alfa Romeo 159 Alfetta, driven by Consalvo Sanesi receiving some tinkering in the pits at the French Grand Prix held at the famous Reims circuit.

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My friends call me a Nerdy Grease Monkey, I've loved cars since I was knee high to a grasshopper but my professional career took me into the United States Marine Corps and the Cyber Security Technology field. Over the past few decades, I have become a self-taught photographer and videographer having my work published in various venues, magazines, and websites. I can be found any given weekend at some sort of automotive event, either in my, Shelby ripping up a track or maybe my Lightning zipping down the 1/4 mile.

2 Responses

  1. Manel Baró

    Remarkable shots indeed. Many tks .
    Just a couple of comments: the Lancia D24, chassis # 0002, was the winner of 14th Giro de Sicilia driven by Taruffi (April 4th 1954) and still sports his Sicilian race nr here.
    The fine portrait of Manzon is even enhanced by the presence of Amadeo Gordini, the man behind the Gordini Sports-racing cars.

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