‘Immaculate Lana’ is taken from Fowler’s recent series ‘Conditional Love’, created for an exhibition in Germany. You can view the original works here. The series featured drawings of iconic mothers in the public eye and their daughters, such as Joan and Christina Crawford, Judy Garland and Liza Minnelli, Lana Turner and Cheryl Crane.
Each mother and daughter pairing are distanced from each other, occupying separate drawings, with Lana Turner’s drawing being reproduced here. The ‘Immaculate’ in the title nods to the immaculate conception, and the preservation of the stars reputation and physicality, this is especially relevant for Lana Turner’s relationship with her daughter Cheryl Crane.
Aged 14, Cheryl Crane stabbed and killed her mother’s boyfriend Jonny Stompanato. The killing was ruled as a justifiable homicide, due to the claim Crane was protecting Turner from a violent attack. Stompanato was widely known to be extremely physically abusive towards Turner. Following the killing Crane was made a ward of the court, and placed in a corrective school for girls to receive psychiatric therapy, despite some escapes Crane remained in this school until shortly after her 18th birthday. On the night that Stompanto died Turner has long been alleged to have called her agent and done her hair and make-up before calling the police, her appearance and reputation taking precedence in these extreme circumstances.
A new book featuring interviews with police officers who attended the Turner residence that night, now claim, they altered the crime scene removing evidence that implicated Turner as the killer. The book alleges that after Turner walked in on Crane and Stompanato asleep on the same bed, Turner stabbed her boyfriend, believing him to have just raped her daughter. Turner and her studio decided to let Crane take the blame, as a minor she would not face jail time and Turner’s reputation would remain intact.
The narrative underpinning this work is typical of Fowler’s approach to demystifying Hollywood’s elite, simultaneously revealing their dark underbelly whilst a certain admiration for icons permeates the work. Similar in style and scale to NFP’s best -selling print ‘Edie’ ‘Immaculate Lana’ translates into an understated and elegant print for the home.