by Cecil Beaton
bromide print on white card mount, circa 1955
9 3/8 in. x 6 3/4 in. (237 mm x 173 mm)
Given by Cecil Beaton, 1968
Sitterback to top
- Merle Oberon (Estelle Merle O'Brien Thompson) (1911-1979), Film actress. Sitter in 31 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), Photographer, designer and writer. Artist associated with 1112 portraits, Sitter associated with 361 portraits.
Events of 1955back to top
Current affairsRobert 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 scienceMary 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.
InternationalWest 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.
Recommended Exhibitions & displays
- Cecil Beaton’s Bright Young Things
Until 7 June
- The World's Most Photographed
- The Royal Ballet at 75
- Britain 1960-1990
- Cecil Beaton Drawings
- Centenaries and Centenarians
- Handlist of names in the Reference Collection
- Photographic holdings - print and negative collections
- Learn more
- In Close Up: Laurence Olivier
- Women Poets and Photography, 1860–1970
- Bill Brandt: Portraits 1982
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