Our latest online sale, British Modern and Contemporary Photography, features an array of iconic figures, including David Bailey's
intriguing Box of Pin-Ups. Below, Christie's specialist Jude Hull takes us through the history, people, and places that made this work endure in
The 1960s has attracted more attention that any decade since. It was a period characterised by newness, idealism, self-fulfilment and free expression. The
Baby Boom generation dictated changes in consumer and popular culture on an unprecedented level. In music, television, fashion, and politics, radical
changes were taking place. The focus on the key players embodying these changes was best articulated as the creation of a new ‘popocracy’ of actors, models,
artists and musicians. David Bailey’s Box of Pin-Ups captured these movers and shakers at this definitive moment.
David Bailey, Mick Jagger.
David Bailey was himself a key player in The 'Swinging Sixties'. Representing a new breed of photographer who not only shot but socialised with models,
actors, and pop stars, he achieved cult status in his own right. Such was his reputation that Michelangelo Antonini based his main character on him in the 1966
cult movie, Blow-Up, about an English fashion photographer who believes he has captured a murder on film.
Each print is accompanied with a note by Francis Wyndham, then-editor of the hugely popular magazine, Queen. It was likely intended for the boxes
to be broken up, so very few complete sets with 'packing piece to be thrown away' stamped cardboard inserts, such as this one, remain. Sold for £10, the
edition run remains unknown, and, the objection to the inclusion of the notorious Kray Twins by Lord Snowdon has been cited as the reason no second or
American edition was produced.
The Sixties is, quite simply, recorded in The Box. The subjects included musicians such as Mick Jagger, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney, the artist David
Hockney, as well as the actors Michael Caine and Terence Stamp, the model Jean Shrimpton, the photographer Cecil Beaton, and many others. All had by 1965
achieved prominence in their respective fields and, who not least through Bailey’s images, themselves came to define the era.
Click here to see more images from our British Modern and Contemporary Photography sale, which runs from 12 – 21 May, 2015; highlights are on view at Christie’s King Street location from 16 – 21 May.