by Yousuf Karsh
bromide print, 1941
10 7/8 in. x 8 1/2 in. (277 mm x 217 mm)
Given by the photographer, Yousuf Karsh, 1991
Sitterback to top
- Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874-1965), Prime Minister. Sitter in 217 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002), Photographer. Artist associated with 157 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.
This portraitback to top
Karsh photographed the great wartime leader on a visit to the Canadian House of Commons in Ottawa. In a moment of boldness, Karsh snatched a cigar from Churchill's mouth. 'By the time I got back to my camera,' he later recalled, 'he looked so belligerent he could have devoured me.' It became one of the best-known photographs of Churchill and Karsh acknowledged that its success 'changed my life.' Dubbed the 'Roaring lion', this became one of the most enduring of Churchill's portraits and is among the most widely reproduced photographs in the history of photography.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Gibson, Robin; Clerk, Honor, 20th Century Portraits in the National Portrait Gallery Collection, 1993, p. 2
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 124
Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top
- Yousuf Karsh (15 January 2008 - 6 July 2008)
- Public and Private: Winston Churchill in Photographs