The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

Search the Collection

Richard Burton

(1925-1984), Actor

Sitter in 11 portraits
The Welsh-born Burton made a name for himself as a classical actor in the West End and Stratford in the early 1950s before being lured to Hollywood. He is best remembered for the brooding realism he brought to his performances in the film of John Osborne's play Look Back in Anger (1959) and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966) in which he played opposite his wife Elizabeth Taylor. Also appeared in The Spy Who came in from the Cold (1965) and Equus (1977).

Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below

Tell us More

 Like voting
is closed

Thanks for Liking

Please Like other favourites!
If they inspire you please support our work.

Make a donation Close

List Thumbnail

Richard Burton, by Irving Penn - NPG P589

Richard Burton

by Irving Penn
bromide print, 1950
NPG P589

Richard Burton, by Daniel Farson - NPG P293

Richard Burton

by Daniel Farson
bromide print, 1953
NPG P293

Richard Burton, by Daniel Farson - NPG x135680

Richard Burton

by Daniel Farson
vintage bromide print, 1953
NPG x135680

Dame Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, by Michael Peto - NPG x137670

Dame Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton

by Michael Peto
modern bromide print from original negative, October 1963
NPG x137670

'Liz Taylor cuts Burton's hair', by William Lovelace, for  Daily Express - NPG x139881

'Liz Taylor cuts Burton's hair'

by William Lovelace, for Daily Express
bromide press print, March 1964
NPG x139881

Richard Burton; Dame Elizabeth Taylor, by Terry O'Neill - NPG x126133

Richard Burton; Dame Elizabeth Taylor

by Terry O'Neill
bromide fibre print, 1971
NPG x126133

Web image not currently available

Avis Scott as Nora McCabe Richard Burton as Ben Satterthwaite in 'Waterfront'

by Ian Jeayes
halftone reproduction tear sheet, published 12 April 1950
NPG x193392

Web image not currently available

Richard Burton in 'Look Back in Anger'

by Bob Penn
bromide print, 1959
NPG x27865

Related People

Tell us more back to top

Can you tell us more about this person? Spotted an error, information that is missing (a sitter’s life dates, occupation or family relationships, or a date of portrait for example) or do you know anything that we don't know? If you have information to share please complete the form below.

If you require information from us, please use our Archive enquiry service. You can buy a print of most illustrated portraits. Select the portrait of interest to you, then look out for a Buy a Print button. Prices start at £6 for unframed prints, £25 for framed prints. If you wish to license an image, please use our Rights and Images service.

Please note that we cannot provide valuations.

We digitise over 8,000 portraits a year and we cannot guarantee being able to digitise images that are not already scheduled.

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 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.

Do, draw and make!

Do, draw and make!

From building dens to food faces – enjoy our Playful Portraits activities and find out about some brilliant people!

Get Creative

Healthcare Heroes

Activities for children and families inspired by three healthcare heroes from our Collection.

Learn together

Learning resources

Downloadable and web based resources to support learning at home linked to art, history, citizenship and literacy.

Get learning