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Artists Cecil Beaton

Cecil Beaton

British Photographer, Costume and Set Designer, Painter, Diarist

Cecil Beaton Photo
Movements and Styles: Fashion Photography, Photojournalism

Born: January 14, 1904 - Hampstead, London, United Kingdom

Died: January 18, 1980 - Broad Chalke, Wiltshire, United Kingdom

".. there is always something dramatic about the job of permanently recording the features of a human being, it is the theatre bought to everyday life; the ordinary routine of existence is broken and the tension is heightened .."


Beaton was one of the foremost photographers of the twentieth century, best known for his elegant and unusual shots of celebrities and royalty. His fascination with glamour and high society continued throughout his life and he was considered a style leader in his own right, known for his easy charm and wit as well as his flamboyance of dress and waspish comments on celebrity figures, a trait that prompted the writer Jean Cocteau to dub him "Malice in Wonderland". He was also a prominent innovator in the relatively new field of fashion photography, an accomplished photojournalist, the winner of two Oscars for his costume design, and a prolific writer publishing numerous texts, including six volumes of his own diaries. Extremely ambitious, Beaton's superb aesthetic eye and flair for the theatrical allowed him to remain relevant over a 50-year career during which he regularly reinvented himself and his style.

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