Sunday 10 June 2012

Cecil + Elizabeth

To celebrate Her Majesty the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Victoria and Albert Museum unveiled an exhibition of 60 royal photographs by Cecil Beaton (1904-1980).

Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration

From teenage Princess, to mother and sovereign,

the Queen posed for Cecil Beaton’s camera on many occasions from the 1940s to the 1960s.

Queen Elizabeth II, White Drawing Room, 1968 :: The Queen wore a turquoise silk sleeveless shift dress with silver floral embroidery designed by Hardy Amies. 

Queen Elizabeth II in the robes of Sovereign of the Order of the Garter. Music Room, Buckingham Palace 1968

The Queen wearing the Admiral’s Boat Cloak

Some extra tid bits

The Order of the Garter was founded by King Edward III in 1348. It is the most senior British order of chivalry. The Queen wears the robes of the Sovereign of the Order: the blue riband (or sash) and the dark blue velvet mantle, on which is pinned the Garter Star. The star comprises the St George’s Cross within the Garter, surrounded by radiating silver beams. St George is the patron saint of the Order.

The Coronation portraits were widely published and the Queen sent out numerous presentation prints as official gifts. Copies of this full-length portrait were given to the royal family and members of Prince Philip’s family. The Queen’s Coronation gown was designed by couturier Norman Hartnell and exquisitely embroidered with the floral emblems of the countries of the Commonwealth.

The photographs of the British royal family by Sir Cecil Beaton (1904-1980) were central to shaping the monarchy’s public image in the mid-20th century. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was still a young princess when she first sat for Beaton in 1942. Over the next three decades he would be invited to photograph the Queen on many significant occasions, including her Coronation Day in 1953.

{Images: Cecil Beaton via Victoria and Albert Museum}


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