by Virginia Surtees
vintage snapshot print, May 1955
3 1/4 in. x 2 1/4 in. (81 mm x 56 mm) image size
Given by Virginia Surtees, 1992
- Iris Tree (1897-1968), Poet, actress and painter; daughter of Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree. Sitter in 6 portraits.
- Virginia Surtees (1917-2017), Author and Rossetti scholar; former wife of Sir (Henry) Ashley Clarke; daughter of Edward Bell. Artist associated with 40 portraits, Sitter in 9 portraits.
- Place made and portrayed: Italy (outside the British Embassy, Rome, Italy)
Robert Anthony Eden becomes prime minister. In May 1955 Winston Churchill resigned due to ill health. His successor proved to be a similarly popular leader, winning an increased majority at the general election that year. Eden's popularity was due to a combination of his long wartime service, good looks and charm.
Art and science
Mary Quant introduces the 'Chelsea Look' with her Bazaar boutique. In the 1960s Quant was a major contributor to 'swinging London' introducing some of the seminal items of 1960s fashion: the miniskirt, hot pants, paint-box make-up and plastic raincoats.
West Germany joins NATO, prompting the East European Communist counties to respond by forming the Warsaw Pact. The signatories of the Warsaw Pact pledged to defend each other if any member was attacked. This development was a major event in the Cold War as it firmly established the East and West as opposing military powers.