Exhibition: Lee Miller ‘A Woman’s War’

Today I visited Imperial War Museum to see the exhibition Lee Miller: A Woman’s War. I had previously heard of Lee Miller and seen some of her war photography but had never experienced her work as seen in this exhibit.
The exhibition was very big and included lots of photographs by Lee Miller; but also of paintings of herself created by Pablo Picasso, Roland Penrose and a cast made by Paul Hamann of Millers torso, objects of hers such as her cameras, equipment, clothing and letters.
The photographs were presented in black frames in different sizes, some of her images were shown digitally using a projector and their was also a video of people talking about her work and a recording of Lee Miller herself in an interview about her work.
The whole exhibition was like a timeline of her photography career; it was amazing to see the amount she had been through. Lee Miller began her career in 1927 and was originally a model for Vogue magazine but ended up being one of their leading photographers. She started of doing fashion photography but gradually became more of a documentary photographer as she captured women’s lives in uniform and even later in her career was a war photographer. She is most well known for her war photography and is one of the most important in the twentieth century due her images taken during the Second World War showing the lasting effects on women in Britain and Europe.
I found her images very fascinating, especially with having the context alongside them on where Miller was in her career and during her life. I also thought having her equipment in the exhibition was very interesting to see what she used during that time period. I am also glad that at the end of the exhibition they showed what she began doing after her career in photography had ended, she began learning to cook and had some of her surrealist recipes shown on Vogue. It actually turned out that Miller’s son had no idea about her career in photography and all the things she had done, and didn’t find out until after her death when he found the photograph in the basement of the family home. This just showed how much of an impact it had on her life, she had completely left that part of her life behind.
Overall I found Lee Miller: A Woman’s War very inspiring and I also liked how the exhibition was laid out, it made it visually interesting and worked well for the viewer to be able to walk around it. I would recommend going to see this exhibition before in closes in April.


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