Exhibitions: Bert Hardy, The Elephant and the Castle. Vintage Photographs of London Life in the 1940s, James Hyman Gallery, London, 16 April - 29 May 2004.
Literature: Life in the Elephant, Picture Post, Vol.42 No.2, January 8th, 1949, illustrated p.15. Bert Hardy: The Elephant and Castle: Vintage photographs of London Life in the 1940s, James Hyman Gallery, London, 2004, (cat. 16), illustrated p.11.
This photograph belongs to a very rare group of vintage photographs by one of Britain's most important photographers, Bert Hardy.
As chief photographer for Picture Post magazine in the 1940s and 1950s, Hardy travelled widely recording people and places across the world. Amongst the most famous of these pictures were an award-winning series depicting life in London's Elephant and Castle district. Photographed over a three week period, between 18 November and 8 December 1948, these photographs were taken for a picture story entitled 'Life in the Elephant', which appeared in Picture Post on 8 January 1949.
This photograph of an intimate interior scene was selected for publication and was accompanies by the following caption by journalist A.L.Loyd:
"Prospect for Elephant Baby. When she grows up her bath will still be a basin. Unless she moves. Or the Elephant changes."
('Life in the Elephant', Picture Post, Vol.42 No.2, January 8th, 1949, p. 15)
We are grateful to Mrs Bert Hardy for her assistance in cataloguing this work.