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.

Dame Anita Roddick

© Trevor Leighton / National Portrait Gallery, London

  • Buy a print
  • Use this image
  • ShareShare this

Dame Anita Roddick

by Trevor Leighton
cibachrome print, 1989
15 1/2 in. x 15 1/2 in. (394 mm x 394 mm)
Commissioned, 1989
Photographs Collection
NPG x33001

Sitterback to top

Artistback to top

  • Trevor Leighton (1957-), Photographer. Artist associated with 249 portraits, Sitter in 3 portraits.

This portraitback to top

Commissioned by the Trustees for the exhibition, Camera Portraits at the National Portrait Gallery.

Linked publicationsback to top

  • Rogers, Malcolm, Camera Portraits, 1989 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 20 October 1989 - 21 January 1990), p. 317 Read entry

    Anita Roddick presides over a cottage-industry which has grown into a multi-million pound business. The daughter of Italian immigrant parents who ran a café in Littlehampton, Anita Parella campaigned as a teenager for CND and Freedom from Hunger, and later worked on a kibbutz, a period which she describes as ‘the benchmark of my life’. While working for an international charity she noticed that the peoples of the Third World countries used natural products on their skin. From this sprang the idea of the first Body Shop, which opened in Brighton in 1975, selling cosmetics made only from natural ingredients, involving no suffering to animals, packed in refillable containers and wrapped in recycled paper. With the help of her husband Gordon Roddick, the Body Shops have now grown into a franchised chain, and are the retail flagship of the environmentalist movement, in which she takes a leading role.

    Trevor Leighton studied at Carlisle College of Art and Design, and for two years played guitar in a punk rock band. He worked first as a photographer in Newcastle, and opened a studio in London in 1981. He specializes in fashion and portraits, and his work has appeared in The Tatler, Woman’s Journal, The Observer, and The Independent magazine. He exhibited in ‘Twenty for Today’ (1986) at the National Portrait Gallery. For portraits he generally favours tight-cropped head shots, but he occasionally, as here, works at three-quarter-length; a format which allows greater scope for his evident fantasy. He portrays Anita Roddick in the clothes she wears for her expeditions to find new products, cradling in her hands a pat of mud, in witty allusion to her concern for all things natural, a ‘friend of the earth’.

Events of 1989back to top

Current affairs

96 people are crushed to death at the Hillsborough football stadium in Sheffield. The accident took place when Liverpool fans were all let into the stadium at once. Incoming crowds crushed people against a fence used to prevent pitch-invasions. Following the Taylor Report into the incident standing terraces and fences between fans and pitch were banned.

Art and science

Following the publication of Anglo-Indian writer Salman Rushdie's novel The Satanic Verses in 1988, the leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, announces that the book is 'blasphemous against Islam' and places a fatwah (death sentence) on Rushdie, who is forced into hiding for several years.


The Berlin Wall is dismantled, reunifying East and West Germany and symbolising the end of the Cold War. Following a decision to allow East Berliners to cross the border with valid visas, crowds swarmed the border crossings. Guards soon gave up trying to stop them, and the physical dismantlement of the wall soon began.
Approximately 2,000 Chinese demonstrators are massacred in Tiananmen Square while protesting against the government.

Tell us more back to top

Can you tell us more about this portrait? 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 this 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.