1 of 17 portraits of Ian Fleming
by Cecil Beaton
vintage bromide print on white card mount, October 1962
9 5/8 in. x 9 1/2 in. (244 mm x 240 mm)
Given by Cecil Beaton, 1972
Artistback to top
- Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), Photographer, designer and writer. Artist or producer associated with 1112 portraits, Sitter associated with 361 portraits.
This portraitback to top
James Bond's suave image is evoked in Beaton's portrait of Fleming reclining in a suit and bow-tie, smoking a cigarette with bottles and a cocktail shaker (recalling Bond's liking for martinis) in the background. In addition to his smoking and drinking habits Fleming also imbued Bond with other personal traits, including his playboy reputation and naval intelligence background, which provided much of the detail for his writing. Leading society and celebrity photographer Beaton was a visitor at Goldeneye, where the Flemings entertained many distinguished guests. Others included fellow writers Evelyn Waugh, Graham Greene and politician Sir Anthony Eden.
Linked publicationsback to top
- 100 Writers, p. 115
- Pepper, Terence, Beaton Portraits, 2004 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 5 February - 31 May 2004)
- Pepper, Terence, Beaton Portraits, 2004 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 5 February to 31 May 2004), p. 147
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 221
Events of 1962back to top
Current affairsAfter a series of by-election defeats, the prime minister, Harold MacMillan organises a drastic cabinet reshuffle, dismissing one third of his cabinet. Liberal MP Jeremy Thorpe's wry comment summed up the desperate action: 'greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his friends for his life.'
Britain suffers the 'Big Freeze' with no frost-free nights between 22nd December 1962 and 5th March 1963.
Art and scienceThe Beatles have their first hit with Love Me Do and release their first album Please Please Me.
The new Coventry Cathedral is consecrated and creates a showcase for British artistic talent with the first performance of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem, a wall hanging by Graham Sutherland, stained glass by John Piper, and sculptures by Jacob Epstein and Elizabeth Frink.
InternationalThe world comes to the brink of nuclear war with the Cuban Missile Crisis. In response to the USA's nuclear advantage, the USSR sent missiles to Cuba. The crisis lasted for 12 days before a deal was finally stuck between Khrushchev and Kennedy in which the Cuban missile bases were dismantled in return for the secret removal of US missiles from Turkey.
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