Night and Day: 1930s Fashion & Photographs and Cecil Beaton exhibitions

29 August 2018


Open: 12th October 2018–20th January 2019

Night and Day: 1930s Fashion & Photographs

Night and Day: 1930s Fashion & Photographs will present the over 100 of the most influential day and evening fashions ensembles of the decade, from fantasy evening wear to beach pyjamas, complemented by photographs of the stars who championed them. The 1930s ushered in the utilitarianism of World War II after the excesses of the 1920s.

Accompanying the main exhibition, the Museum’s smaller gallery will feature a selection of rare eveningwear; floor-length sequins suitable for the silver screen, accompanied by newsreel and photographs of the starlets of the time. The Main Gallery will also present a selection of portraits by pioneering photographers of the time; Paul Tanqueray, Madame Yevonde and Dorothy Wilding.

Finally, The Fashion Studio will host Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 1930s – Fashion, Film, Fantasy. This display will comprise thirty images by the highly influential and innovative photographer, whose photographs of famous figures in fashion, film, the arts and society, including Chanel and Schiaparelli, Marlene Dietrich and Vivien Leigh, Salvador Dali and Queen Elizabeth II, helped to define the look of an era.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a learning programme which includes talks, events and workshops. For more details please see the Museum website.

Loretta Young photograph by Cecil Beaton 1931 courtesy of The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive Sothebys


Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s Fashion, Film and Fantasy

Accompanying the main Night and Day exhibition is a smaller display: Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s Fashion, Film and Fantasy. Beaton spent many years as a major contributor to Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Life, The Sketch and Tatler, photographing the most notable names in fashion, film, the arts and society. Although Beaton’s career spanned some 50 years and embraced painting, interior design, costume and more, some of his best-known works are his fashion photographs of the 1930s.

Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s will present some of Beaton’s most recognisable portraits, featuring subjects such as Salvador Dali, Elsa Schiaparelli, Marlene Dietrich and Katharine Hepburn. Other key pieces will include a rare 1935 colour photograph of model Mary Taylor and a selection of images from Beaton’s notorious and fantastical house parties, held at his glamorous home at Ashcombe.

Cecil Beaton: Thirty from the 30s is curated by Terence Pepper, in association with the Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby’s. 

The Fashion and Textile Museum
83 Bermondsey Street,
SE1 3XF 

Tickets: are available now. £9.90 adults, £8.80 concessions, £7 students and free entry for under 12s. Ticket price covers the price of both exhibitions.



Picture copyright: 

Top: Michele Morgan photographed by Ernest Bachrach, circa 1939. Private collection.

Bottom: Loretta Young, photograph by Cecil Beaton, 1931, courtesy of The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby’s.