Clare Freestone

Clare Freestone

Associate Curator of Photographs


Job description

As Associate Curator of Photographs (part-time) my work at the Gallery involves working with the breadth of the Photographic Collection comprising 250,000 items and with the varied subjects the photographs depict from the 1840s to the present day. Recent displays I have co-curated include Scandal ’63 and Marilyn Monroe: A British Love Affair. I have recently curated The Bloomsbury Poet & The Cambridge Photographer: Julian Bell & Lettice Ramsey, with Peter Stansky, Famous in the Fifties: Photographs by Daniel Farson and Private Eye: Photographs by Lewis Morley (2011-12). I am responsible, with colleagues, for making photographic acquisitions for the Collection.

Biography

I joined the Photographs department of the National Portrait Gallery in 2000 as Assistant Curator. Some of the displays that I curated as such include Seizing an Instant: Photographs by Roger Mayne (2004), John Gay: Portraits in Print (2006), Private View: British Pop and the 60s Art Scene (2007) and Jazz in London: Photographs by Walter Hanlon (2008). In 2009 I was appointed Associate Curator for the exhibition and publication Ida Kar: Bohemian Photographer (2011). I studied BA Hons Fine Art at Wimbledon School of Art (1994-8), writing my dissertation on the work of Alberto Giacometti and Germaine Richier and the concerns of Existentialism.

Research interests

Whilst at the National Portrait Gallery I have developed my interest in post-war photography and culture. The research that I undertook for the exhibition of the work of Ida Kar, a photographer of Armenian origin, portraying artists and writers in London and Paris in the 1950s and 1960s, led to a specific interest in this period and milieu. I am currently working on a centenary display to mark the birth of Vivien Leigh, to open at the Gallery in November 2013.

Recent Publications

Ida Kar: Bohemian Photographer (NPG, 2011), Ida Kar: Portraits of F.N. Souza (Grosvenor Vadhera, 2011).