Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Cecil Beaton (British, 1904-1980)
    Nancy Cunard, 1929
    Gelatin silver
    3 x 2-3/8 inches (7.6 x 6.0 cm)
    Signed in ink and annotated A quoi? in pencil in lower margin recto.

    Nancy Clara Cunard (March 10, 1896-March 17, 1965) was a writer, heiress, and political activist.

    PROVENANCE:
    André Thirion, Paris, 1968;
    The Estate of Carlton Lake.

    Photographs from the Estate of Carlton Lake

    For over 60 years, Carlton Lake collected what ultimately became the largest group of late 19th and early 20th century French literary research materials anywhere outside of Paris. His collection of approximately 350,000 items included books, photographs, artwork, musical scores and manuscripts, covering a broad range of French writers, artists, and musicians.

    Carlton Lake was born in Brockton, Massachusetts on September 7, 1915. He attended Boston University and graduated summa cum laude in 1936, and in 1937 received a Master of Arts degree from Columbia University. During World War II, he served in the U.S. Marine Corps. After the war, he pursued his doctorate at New York University, but ultimately abandoned his dissertation to become a freelance writer.

    From 1950 to 1965 he was Paris art critic for The Christian Science Monitor. He also contributed to a number of other American and European periodicals, such as The New Yorker, The New York Times, Town and Country, and The Atlantic Monthly, which published his interviews with such artists as Matisse, Picasso, Chagall, Henry Moore, and Giacometti.

    While living on the Ile Saint-Louis in Paris, he met Henri-Pierre Roché and began visiting him at his apartment in the Boulevard Arago. There they began discussions for Carlton's acquisition of his entire, massive and magnificent archive. After Roché died in 1959, his widow, Denise, began to put her husband's estate in order. Ten years later she started turning the collection over to Carlton. Three of the photographs offered here are from that archive.

    In 1968 Carlton Lake joined the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at the University of Texas at Austin. He served as Curator of the French Collection, Acting Director, and Executive Curator. His impressive collection of French materials was added to the Ransom Center collections through gifts and purchases from the late 1960s to 2002.

    In 1985 he was decorated by the French government and inducted into L'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres with the rank of Chevalier; later he became an Officier.

    Lake retired from the Ransom Center in 2003 with the title of Executive Curator Emeritus. He died on May 5, 2006 at the age of ninety.

    We would like to thank Linda Ashton for giving us a detailed bography of Carlton Lake and helping us with provenance information.


    Condition Report*: In overall excellent condition with silver mirroring to the darkest areas of the image visible in racking light.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2020
    4th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 428

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2020 September 13 - 14 The Jena Blue Collection of Gemstones Signature Auction - New York .

    Learn about consigning with us

    Your reply to my request for an auction appraisal was the most encouraging, comprehensive, and enthusiastic reply I got (and a got several).
    Robert M.,
    New Harbor, ME
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search