Cecil Beaton (Hardback)
Cecil Beaton was a fashion, portrait and war photographer, a diarist, artist and an Academy Award-winning designer. He is one of the most celebrated portrait photographers of the twentieth century and is renowned for his images of elegance, glamour and style. Cecil Beaton: Portraits and Profiles combines Beaton's photographic and pen portraits. His images often flattered but his diaries and journals didn't necessarily follow suit; he was described by Jean Cocteau as 'Malice in Wonderland'. Grouped together in chapters on the Roaring Twenties, High Society and Haute Couture, Hollywood, the War Years, the Arts, and the Peacock Revolution, Beaton's portraits offer insight, beauty, witty observations and a fascinating glimpse into his world. Included are Mick Jagger, Marlon Brando ('pallid as a mushroom, smooth-skinned and scarred, with curved feminine lips and silky hair, he seems as unhealthy as a lame duck. Yet his ram-like profile has the harsh strength of the gutter'), Maria Callas, Coco Chanel, Greta Garbo, Audrey Hepburn ('she is like a portrait by Modigliani where the various distortions are not only interesting in themselves but make a completely satisfying composite'), Elizabeth Taylor, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe ('she romps, she squeals with delight, she leaps on the sofa. It is an artless, impromptu, high-spirited, infectiously gay performance. It will probably end in tears'), Princess Grace, Queen Elizabeth and Winston Churchill. Cecil Beaton's life spanned many worlds and these are captured here through his fabulous photographs and incisive observations.