There are still a few days left to see the exhibition of Cecil Beaton’s photography at the Imperial War Museum in London. It lasts until 1 January 2013.
The evocative wartime photographs are, as you would expect, centre stage in the exhibition. But what really caught my interest was his personal story of disgrace and recovery: sacked and pilloried in the late 1930s for adding anti-Semitic phrases to a cartoon, his rehabilitation started with a commission from the Royal Family and he then went on to take some of the most famous and iconic photographs of Britain’s role in the Second World War, including of Winston Churchill.
A selection of Beaton’s photographs is available to view online on the Imperial War Museum’s website, though this is really no substitute for seeing what is a very well designed exhibition, making good use of space, light and scale to maximise the impact of the photos. The positioning of one print, lining up the prow of a ship with an angle in the wall, is particularly effective.
A very enjoyable and educational hour or two can be spent going round this exhibition.