Search the Collection

Kay Kendall (1926-1959), Actress

Sitter in 10 portraits
First appeared on screen in 1944 and became a major star playing opposite Kenneth More in Genevieve (1953). Other films included Doctor in the House (1954) and The Constant Husband (1955),when she first met her Rex Harrison who married her in 1957. Her starring role opposite Gene Kelly in the Hollywood musical Les Girls (1957) attracted plaudits by the critics who compared her to Carole Lombard. Already ill with leukemia she made only two more films The Reluctant Debutante (1958) and Once More, with Feeling! (1960).

List Thumbnail


Kay Kendall

by Fred Daniels
vintage bromide print, 1949
NPG P387


Kay Kendall

by Cecil Beaton
vintage bromide print on white card mount, 1957
NPG P869(18)


Kay Kendall

by Anthony Buckley
modern bromide print from original negative, 1948
NPG x75963


Kay Kendall

by Fred Daniels
modern print from original negative, 1949
NPG x133204


Kay Kendall

by Fred Daniels
modern print from original negative, 1949
NPG x133205


Kay Kendall

by Fred Daniels
modern print from original negative, 1949
NPG x133206


Kay Kendall

by (Edward) Russell Westwood
cibachrome print from original transparency, 1950s
NPG x68273


Kay Kendall

by Cornel Lucas
bromide print, 1952
NPG x127229


Kay Kendall as Monica Hathaway and Rex Harrison as William Egerton in 'The Constant Husband'

by Unknown photographer
vintage print, 1955
NPG x194280


Vivien Leigh; Kay Kendall; Sir Noël Coward; Lauren Bacall

by Keystone Press Agency Ltd
vintage press print, 29 January 1959
NPG x139808

Tell us moreback to top

Can you tell us more about this person? Spotted an error, something missing, or do you know anything that we don't know? If you have any information to share please complete the form below

What can you tell us?close

There are occasions when we are unsure of the identity of a sitter or artist, their life dates, occupation or have not recorded their family relationships. Sometimes we have not recorded the date of a portrait. Do you have specialist knowledge or a particular interest about any aspect of the portrait or sitter or artist that you can share with us? We would welcome any information that adds to and enhances our information and understanding about a particular portrait, sitter or artist.


How do you know this? Please could you let us know your source of information.

* Permission to publish (Privacy information)
Privacy Informationclose

The National Portrait Gallery will NOT use your information to contact you or store for any other purpose than to investigate or display your contribution. By ticking permission to publish you are indicating your agreement for your contribution to be shown on this collection item page. Please note your email address will not be displayed on the page nor will it be used for any marketing material or promotion of any kind.

Please ensure your comments are relevant and appropriate. Your contributions must be polite and with no intention of causing trouble. All contributions are moderated.

Your nameclose

If you tick permission to publish your name will appear above your contribution on our website.

Your Emailclose

Contributions are moderated. We'll need your email address so that we can follow up on the information provided and contact you to let you know when your contribution has been published.