Baron Studios, day books

Scope and Content

Three volumes used by Baron Studios to record sitters in studio and negative numbers used, the specific volumes are:

-Black & white Negative Record Book commencing 1st Apr 1955, ending Nov 1964
Typed information on how the records within the book are arranged have been stuck to the first pages of the volume, there is evidence that a typed page of information was stuck over one of these pages at one time and later removed. The records of sittings and negative numbers have been arranged according to the following groups: women, men, groups and juveniles - there is more than one section recording men. In addition the individual records have been marked with a code outlining the year the photograph was taken, the type of photograph (one of the following classifications: women, men, groups, commercial, editorial features, ballet, films, theatre, private, nude, horses, juvenile), the photographer and the negative number.

-Baron Studios, Nov 64-Oct 73, ?Sept 74
The records of sitters and negative numbers have been arranged according to the following groups women, men, editorial, juvenile and private - there is more than one section recording men. The entries record the date of the photograph, the name of the sitter and the negative number - this appears to have been entered in the same code as that used in the previous record book.

-Baron Studios, no label or title given to volume
The beginning of the volume contains records of sitters from 1946 to 1949. The information captured consists of date of sitting; name or subject of sitter; negative number; price paid and whether this was a commercial, private or ballet payment. The volume also contains records of sitters from Oct 1973 to Nov 1974, the information captured consists of date of sitting; name of sitter and negative number. The majority of the volume is unpopulated.

Administrative / Biographical History

Baron Studios were founded in the early 1950s by Baron, born Sterling (or Stirling) Henry Nahum (1906-1956). Baron was born in Manchester and of Jewish Italian ancestry. He embarked on a career as a photographer in his thirties, his photographs of the Sadler's Wells ballet company first brought him to attention. After the Second World War he concentrated on society and celebrity portraits. He was appointed a court photographer to the Royal Family, taking the official photographs of the wedding of Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth II) to Prince Philip in 1947 and later the christenings of their children Prince Charles and Princess Anne.

In 1954 he founded Baron Studios on Park Lane, Mayfair, taking commissioned portraits mainly of leading businessmen, though many of the more interesting subjects, including those in colour or on location were of writers, musicians, foreign dignitaries, artists, broadcasters and fashion designers. Among the photographers who worked for Baron Studios were Count Zichy and Rex Coleman. The firm continued after Baron's untimely death until its purchase in 1974 by Godfrey Argent, who donated the Baron collection of negatives to the National Portrait Gallery in 1999.

Access Information

Available to view by appointment in the Heinz Archive and Library Public Study Room, to make an appointment contact Archive Reception . Although records are generally available for public consultation, some information in them, such as personal data or information supplied to the Gallery in confidence, may be restricted.

Conditions Governing Use

Personal photography is permitted for research purposes only. Photocopying is not permitted.