Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s | Fashion, Film and Fantasy

Display Dates: 12 October 2018 – 20 January 2019



Celebrated as one of Britain’s most influential portrait photographers, Cecil Beaton (1904-1980) was among the greatest visual chroniclers of the Twentieth Century. This distinguished photographer spent many years as a major contributor to Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Life, The Sketch and Tatler, photographing the most notable names in fashion, film, the arts and society.

Although Beaton’s career spanned some 50 years and embraced painting, interior design, costume and more, some of his best-known works are his fashion photographs of the 1930s. Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s will present some of Beaton’s most influential and recognisable portraits, featuring subjects including Salvador Dali, Elsa Schiaparelli, Marlene Dietrich and Katharine Hepburn. Another key piece will be a rare 1935 colour photograph of model Mary Taylor and a selection of images created at Beaton’s notorious and fantastical house parties, held at his glamorous home at Ashcombe.

This display coincides with the 50th anniversary of Cecil Beaton’s ground-breaking retrospective, organised by Sir Roy Strong, at the National Portrait Gallery in 1968.

Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s is curated by Terence Pepper in association with the Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby’s.

Display admission included with Night and Day: 1930s Fashion and Photographs exhibition.

Image: Portrait of The Soapsuds Group by Cecil Beaton, 1930. Courtesy of The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby’s

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