© estate of Peter Keen / National Portrait Gallery, London
by Peter Keen Click on the links below to find out more
vintage bromide print, mid 1950s
11 7/8 in. x 9 3/4 in. (301 mm x 249 mm)
- Dame Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975), Sculptor; second wife of Ben Nicholson. Sitter in 28 portraits, Artist of 1 portrait.
This portrait shows Hepworth posing confidently with the tools of her trade. With hammer and chisel in hand she's making a conscious statement of her standing as a sculptor.
'The right is only a motor hand. This holds the hammer. The left hand, the thinking hand, must be relaxed, sensitive. The rhythms of thought pass thorough the fingers and grip of this hand into the stone.'
Barbara Hepworth. A Pictorial Autobiography (1970)
- NPG x36003: Barbara Hepworth (from same photo shoot)
A combination of low pressure in the North Sea, hurricane force winds, and high tides result in the Great Flood of 1953. With no warning system many were trapped in their homes as 20-foot waves crashed on the coast; hundreds were killed at sea and on the east coast.John Hunt's British Expedition conquers Everest. News of the achievement reached Britain on the day of Elizabeth's coronation.
Art and science
Frances Crick and James Watson discover the double helix structure of DNA. Uncovering DNA's chemical make-up revolutionised our understanding of the building blocks of life.Ian Fleming publishes his first James Bond novel, Casino Royal
.Chad Varah founds 'The Samaritans' helpline.
Joseph Stalin dies four days after suffering a stroke. It has been suggested that Stalin was assassinated, as he was denied medical assistance for over a day after he was found; many suspect that he was poisoned. On his death Georgy Malenkov became leader of the Soviet Union.