© reserved; collection National Portrait Gallery, London
by Lee Miller
gelatin silver print, 1942
15 3/8 in. x 14 5/8 in. (390 mm x 371 mm)
Artistback to top
- Lee Miller (1907-1977), Photographer. Artist of 16 portraits, Sitter in 13 portraits.
This portraitback to top
In this surreal portrait, writer, painter and documentary filmmaker Jennings appears near an implausible-looking cloud of cigarette smoke, which seems to be coming out of his mouth, even though no cigarette is seen. The cloud resembles a human head, like a ghostly figure looking back at him. Miller made this photograph of Jennings for Vogue magazine in 1942, but their friendship predated the war, both being associated with the British Surrealist group. By 1932, following a romantic relationship with Man Ray, Miller returned to New York to establish her own studio and later moved to London to live with the artist, historian and poet Roland Penrose.
Linked publicationsback to top
Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top
- Photography: A Public Art, 1840-1939 (4 November 2017 - 14 October 2018)
Events of 1942back to top
Current affairsThe Oxford Committee for Famine Relief is founded in Oxford with the aim of sending food through the Allied blockade of Nazi-Occupied Greece. The organisation continued after the war to relieve suffering as a result of the war in Europe, and eventually to help distressed peoples internationally. It gradually became known as Oxfam, after its telegraph address, and is now one of the largest international development and aid agencies.
Art and scienceDesert Island Discs is broadcast for the first time. Each week a famous guest is invited to select which eight pieces of music they would choose to take if they were castaway on an island. The show is still going and is the longest running music programme on radio.
Enid Blyton publishes her first Famous Five children's book: Five On A Treasure Island.
InternationalThe Allied forces sign the 'Declaration by United Nations', pledging the signatories to fight together until the end of the war and establishing an international organisation with the aim of upholding world peace and security with Sir Gladwyn Jebb as the first Secretary General.
In Berlin, senior Nazis plan the 'Final Solution' to exterminate European Jews, and start building death camps to carry it out.