Overview of the Bern Schwartz Photographs

Finding aid prepared by Hoover Institution Archives Staff
Hoover Institution Archives
Stanford, CA, 94305-6010
(650) 723-3563

Title: Bern Schwartz photographs
Collection Number: 2012C18
Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Archives
Stanford, California 94305-6010
Language of Material: In English
Collection Size: 1 oversize box (0.5 linear feet)
Date (inclusive): 1974-1978
Abstract: Portraits of prominent British and other political figures.
Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
Creator: Schwartz, Bern


The collection is open for research.
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Publication Rights

For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Bern Schwartz photographs, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives

Acquisition Information

Materials were acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 2012.


Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog Socrates at http://library.stanford.edu/webcat . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in Socrates is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

Biographical Note

Bern Schwartz (1914-1978) took up photography at the age of sixty after a successful career in business. In that short career, Schwartz captured some two hundred distinguished personalities on film.
Combining extensive research on his subjects' interests with his own experience and charm, Schwartz was able to converse intelligently and establish the rapport necessary to create portraits that captured the essence of his subjects. His photographic encounters often ripened into enduring friendships with some of the world's leading figures.
Schwartz's work was published in Contemporaries: Portraits by Bern Schwartz. In his forward to the book, art historian Kenneth Clark wrote, "I believe historians ... will find these photographs an invaluable guide to the intellectual life of the time. Meanwhile, we can enjoy them as wholly admirable examples of the art of photography."

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains thirty-four portraits of prominent British and other political figures. Among the images are those of royalty, heads of state, diplomats, military leaders, and literary figures, including Margaret Thatcher, Henry Kissinger, four Israeli prime ministers, and journalist and author Malcolm Muggeridge. Thatcher chose Schwartz's portrait for her 1978 campaign poster, and a 1982 commemorative first-day cover commemorative stamp in England features Schwartz's portrait of Lord Mountbatten.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Great Britain--Politics and government--Pictorial works.