Audrey Hepburn Family Album
Rare pictures of Audrey Hepburn from family album to go on show
Photographs of Audrey Hepburn from her family’s collection are to go on show at the National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery is to stage its first major exhibition featuring rarely-seen photographs of Audrey Hepburn, on the site of her career-changing early nightclub performance 65 years ago.
The gallery has announced a new show entitled Audrey Hepburn, Portraits of an Icon, which will feature a host of pictures from the actress’ family photo album.
As well as personal photographs of her practising ballet as a young woman and behind-the-scenes of her films, it will also include some of her most famous portraits by Richard Avedon, Cecil Beaton, Angus McBean, Irving Penn and Norman Parkinson.
The exhibition will be held on the same site as one of her earliest performances in showbusiness, in revues at the London nightclub Ciro’s.
The West End venue, renowned in its day, saw Hepburn perform in her early 20s as she was just beginning her career, with roles in Cecil Landeau’s late-night production Petite Sauce Tartarein 1949 and Summer Nights in 1950.
The performances led to her being talent spotted and propelled into British film to star in British films including One Wild Oat in 1951, Laughter in Paradise 1951 and Secret People.
From there, she went on to become one of the most recognisable film stars and most photographed women of all time.
The building which used to house Ciro’s, located on Orange Street, London, is now occupied by the National Portrait Gallery’s public archive and study room.
The exhibition will showcase pictures taken during the shooting of some of her most famous films, as well as modelling shots and candid home photographs.
Highlights will include family photographs of Hepburn practising ballet as a young woman, and examples of her early work in London as a fashion model.
A rarely-seen series, taken by photographer Mark Shaw during the making of Sabrina, will give an insight into Hepburn’s life off screen, after he was granted behind-the-scenes access.
Others will show the actress in her dressing room on Broadway for Gigi in 1951, in Italy during the filming of War and Peace in 1955, publicity photographs for Funny Face in 1957; and Terry O’Neill’s on-set photographs during the making of films How to Steal a Million and Two for the Road.
Extracts from Hepburn’s magazine shoots will also be on display, as well as original film posters and other ephemera.
Pim Baxter, deputy director of the National Portrait Gallery, said: “Audrey Hepburn was one of the world’s most celebrated actresses, and I am delighted that the National Portrait Gallery will hold a major photography exhibition exploring the life and work of such a significant and much-loved figure who spent the formative early years of her career in Britain.
“It is particularly appropriate that the exhibition will be staged in such close proximity to where she performed as a young woman at the very start of her career.”
Audrey Hepburn: Portraits of an Icon, will run from July 2 until October 18, 2015 at the National Portrait Gallery, London.