Love, Cecil: A Journey with Cecil Beaton

Abrams. 2017. 256p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9781419726606. $50. DEC ARTS
Filmmaker (Peggy Guggenheim) and writer (Diana Vreeland) Vreeland has compiled a book on the multifaceted creative Cecil Beaton (1904–80); she has also made a film version. The prolific Beaton wrote 38 books, was a talented photographer who worked for Vogue and Vanity Fair, and designed costumes for the films My Fair Lady (1964) and Gigi (1958). While many books have been written about Beaton, Vreeland's aim is to shed new light on his motivations and desires through highlighting work from his archives (such as the Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby's London) that has not been covered before, such as his scrapbooks, sketches, and letters. Many of his photographs are also reproduced, often with commentary, sometimes not complimentary, by Beaton that further exposes his relationships with the sitters. Sections include "Scrapbooks," "Ballet," "Hollywood," "Fashion," and "Artists and Writers," among others.
VERDICT More of a supplement to other works on Beaton, this is primarily for readers already familiar with him.
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