λ Cecil Beaton (British 1904-1980)
Lady Caroline Duff holding her son Charles David Duff (b.1950)
Gelatin silver print
Stamped with studio stamp and inscribed (verso)
20.6 x 19.6cm (8 x 7½ in.)
Together with another photograph by Cecil Beaton , Sir Michael Duff (1907-1980), Raimund von Hofmannsthal (1906-1974), Duff Cooper (1890-1954), Lady Caroline Duff, née Paget (1913-1973) Lady Elizabeth von Hofmannsthal, née Paget (1916-1980) with her two children, Sarah Arabella Marjorie von Hofmannsthal (b.1942) and Octavian von Hofmannsthal (b.1946) (sitters in order of left to right), Gelatin silver print, Inscribed (verso) 18.7 x 23.5cm (7 3/8 x 9 1/4in.) Unframed (2)
Private collection, a local lady who was employed at Plas Newydd
By direct descent to her daughter
The photographer, Cecil Beaton (1904-1980) was a British fashion, portrait and war photographer. Beaton is renowned for having a distinguished style characterized by taking advantage of the perfect shutter-release moment. This enabled him to produce striking, high-definition images that were ideal for fashion photography and high-society portraits. He was employed in the United States by Vogue and Vanity Fair, and photographed celebrities such as Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Coco Chanel and Katherine Hepburn, as well as the artists Francis Bacon, Andy Warhol and Georgia O'Keeffe. Upon returning to England in the late 1930s, he produced portraits of the Royal Family and the British high society, of which this set of photos is a part of. Beaton was also a friend of Rex Whislter, whom he photographed and was painted by.
The two photographs show the members of the prominent families Paget, Duff and Hofmannsthal. The first photograph shows Sir Michael Duff and Raimund von Hofmannsthal standing next to Duff Cooper. Sitting on the armchair is Lady Caroline Duff, née Paget, and her younger sister Lady Elizabeth von Hofmannsthal with her two children, Sarah and Octavian.
The second photograph depicts Lady Caroline Duff holding her son Charles, who was adopted after her marriage with Sir Michael Duff in 1939.
Lady Caroline Duff, née Paget (1913-1973) was the first daughter of Charles Paget (1885-1947), 6th Marquess of Anglesey and his wife Lady Victoria Manners, and eldest sister to Charles Paget, 6 th Marquess of Anglesey (1885-1947). She developed a relationship with painter Rex Whistler (1905-1944) after he was commissioned by the Marquess to paint a mural in the dining room of Plas Newydd, where it can still be admired. Whistler became a friend of the family and spent much time with the family during the 1930s, producing several paintings of the Marquess' eldest daughters. The numerous casual portraits of the eldest daughter, as well as the famous nude study from the Plas Newydd collection are a testimony to Whistler's fascination with Lady Caroline. Five years after Whistler's death in 1944 during the Second World War, Lady Caroline married Sir Michael Duff, 3 rd Baronet (1907-1980), grandson of the fourth Earl of Lonsdale and godson of Queen Mary. Together, they adopted Charles David Duff (b.1950).
Duff Cooper, 1 st Viscount Norwich (1890-1954) was a military, diplomat and politician who served as Secretary of State of War and as Minister of Information. He was related to Sir Michael Duff on his mother's side, Lady Agnes Duff (1852-1925), daughter of James Duff, 5 th Earl of Fife.
Lady Elizabeth Hester Mary von Hofmannsthal, née Paget (1916-1980), was Lady Caroline's younger sister and the second child of the 6th Marquess of Anglesey. She was maid of honour at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, in 1937. She was also the subject of Rex Whistler's art, seem in a reclining portrait from 1938 that hangs at Plas Newydd. Lady Elizabeth was married in 1939 to Raimund von Hofmannsthal (1906-1974), the son of Gertrud Schlesinger and Austrian dramatist Hugo von Hofmannsthal (a friend of composers Richard Strauss and Jean Sibelius, and producer Max Reinhardt). They had a daughter, Sarah Arabella Marjorie von Hofmannsthal (b.1942) and a son, Octavian von Hofmannsthal (b.1946).
Lady Caroline Duff and her son - The edges and corners with scuffs and abrasions. Crease to the upper right corner. Staining and scratch to the right edge. A small vertical tear to the centre of the upper edge. A small vertical tear to the lower edge. Edges curling slightly.
Sir Michael Duff and family - Creases to the four corners. Staining to the upper edge at the left hand side. A faint diagonal crease to the upper right quadrant.
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