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Ang Lee

National Portrait Gallery

Naomi Campbell

National Portrait Gallery

Susan Sarandon

National Portrait Gallery
Actress and activist Susan Sarandon started her film career as a self-declared "hippie chick" in Joe (1970) and The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975), then charted an independent course through five decades of films. Sarandon’s mix of wide-eyed wonder and relaxed resilience marks her singular film persona, captured here by Brigitte Lacombe. Her cool sensuality runs through her roles in Pretty Baby (1978) and Atlantic City (1980)—both directed by Louis Malle—and her tough-mama turns in Bull Durham (1988) and Thelma & Louise (1991). She has often explored women’s sexuality openly on screen, from her lesbian scene in The Hunger (1983) to the class struggle of White Palace (1990). Over the past generation, Sarandon has brought together her acting and social activism, narrating various documentaries on political issues and earning an Oscar for Dead Man Walking (1995).

Quentin Tarantino

National Portrait Gallery
Quentin Tarantino is a filmmaker, screenwriter, and producer whose films exemplify pastiche—a key element of postmodern style—and anticipate remix culture. An outspoken and irreverent director, Tarantino grew up immersed in the film, music, and television of the 1970s, from Bruce Lee to Soul Train. Many of his films are stylish revenge narratives that combine elements of martial arts and blaxploitation films, biker films, and B movies. In an innovative move, Tarantino often writes scripts featuring cool, violent female protagonists on a quest for security, revenge, or redemption (Pam Grier in Jackie Brown [1997], Uma Thurman in Kill Bill [2003–4], the women in Death Proof [2007]). These films rarely indulge in social commentary. His style is his substance: Tarantino speaks the grammar of violence ingrained in American cinema, but by transgressing genre boundaries, he creates jarring, nonlinear narratives, as in Pulp Fiction (1994). His pulp thrillers suggest that the American collective unconscious is shot through with pop-cultural imagery awaiting interpretation.

Sam Shepard

National Portrait Gallery
One of the most gifted playwrights of his generation, Sam Shepard made his reputation exploring the dark underbelly of the American family. In plays such as Curse of the Starving Class (1976), Buried Child (1979)—which won the Pulitzer Prize for drama—and True West (1981) he probed the fractures and loneliness that pervade individuals and their family relationships. Shepard grew up in a strict military family; he dropped out of college and became involved in the off-off-Broadway theater scene. Influenced by the counterculture, his plays grapple with sin and redemption through a brutal lyricism. Shepard has also enjoyed a prolific film career as an actor and screenwriter—for Paris, Texas (1985) and Fool For Love (1984), among others—while his rugged western looks and laconic style hark back to Gary Cooper. In 1983, the year of this portrait, he was nominated for an Academy Award for his role as the pilot Chuck Yeager in The Right Stuff.

Maya Angelou, Algonquin Hotel, New York, NY, 1987

National Portrait Gallery
Born St. Louis, Missouri

One of America’s most important writers and poets, Maya Angelou (born Marguerite Ann Johnson) wrote a series of seven autobiographical novels that are an indelible record of resistance and achievement by African Americans, particularly African American women. Angelou had a difficult and endangered childhood, shuttling back and forth between relatives in the North and South. She suffered from economic hardship and sexual abuse, which she documented in her first book, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969), and in subsequent volumes. Her subject was always her own life, and her autobiographies are not necessarily strictly factual or literally “true,” but rather a retelling of emotional truths. A politically engaged writer, Angelou was also a poet; she read her poem “On the Pulse of the Morning” at President Bill Clinton’s 1993 inauguration.

Oprah Winfrey

National Portrait Gallery
Born Kosciusko, Mississippi

The media mogul Oprah Winfrey has been called the “most influential” and “most powerful” woman in the world. Born to an impoverished single mother, she started her reporting career on the radio. Winfrey soon translated her on-air success to the television screen, working as a news anchor for several local stations. By the mid-1980s, she was at the helm of her own nationally syndicated talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show (1986–2011), and her production company, HARPO. Winfrey’s empathetic persona grew in popularity during her years as a talk show host, and she expanded her brand to encompass a television network and magazine. In addition to producing movies, she has received praise for her performances in such films as The Color Purple (1985), Beloved (1998), and The Butler (2013). She often wields her influence by bringing attention to philanthropic causes, including education, natural disaster relief, housing, arts and culture, medical research, and environmental initiatives.

Nacida en Kosciusko, Misisipi

La magnate de los medios de comunicación Oprah Winfrey ha sido descrita como la mujer “más influyente” y “más poderosa” del mundo. Hija de una madre soltera de pocos recursos, comenzó su carrera como reportera en la radio. Pronto trasladó su éxito radial a la televisión, trabajando como presentadora de noticias en varias estaciones locales. Para media- dos de la década de 1980 se encontraba al timón de su propio programa de entrevistas transmitido nacionalmente, The Oprah Winfrey Show (1986–2011), así como de su compañía productora HARPO. Su imagen empática fue ganándole popularidad a lo largo de más de 20 años en el aire, y mientras tanto extendió su marca a una cadena de televisión y una revista. Además de producir películas, ha recibido elogios por su actuación en filmes como The Color Purple (1985), Beloved (1998) y The Butler (2013). A menudo emplea su influencia para traer a la atención pública causas filantrópicas como la educación, el socorro ante desastres naturales, la vivienda, el arte y la cultura, la investigación médica e iniciativas ambientalistas.

Margaret Debardeleben Tutwiler

National Portrait Gallery

Patrick Hayward Caddell

National Portrait Gallery

John Marin Self-Portrait

National Portrait Gallery
John Marin's celebrated art concerned monumental forms and forces: bridges, skyscrapers, mountains, sea, and sky. But late in his career Marin discovered a new interest in the human scale of portraiture. An individualist inspired by modern art but not adhering to any movement, Marin used bold strokes, rich colors, and a cubist-influenced linear structure to explore both urban and rural worlds. Marin's well-known face was frequently photographed, painted, or sculpted by other artists. "John Marin is an American original," one wrote. "His face is incredibly wrinkled and puckers into all sorts of criss-cross lines." In this self-portrait, the painter of rugged coastlines observed the effects of time and weather on his own visage. "He was born old," critic Henry McBride wrote of Marin, "and has remained young."

Warren Buffett

National Portrait Gallery
Born Omaha, Nebraska

Warren Buffett is one of the most successful contemporary businessmen and investors; he is regularly listed as one of the wealthiest people in the world because of the success of his investment firm, Berkshire Hathaway. Buffett is known for his patience and belief in long-term value investing. He is also personally frugal and modest, befitting a man who made his stake in the business world by saving nearly $10,000 by 1950, when he was twenty. Buffett started out in the insurance industry but branched out into investment partnerships, which he then consolidated into Berkshire Hathaway. Buffett acquired this textile firm in 1962 but sold the manufacturing plant to concentrate on investments only. Buffett has pledged to give most of his immense wealth to philanthropy in his will.

William Shirer

National Portrait Gallery
Born Chicago, Illinois

Journalist William Shirer helped pioneer the rise of broadcast journalism in the late 1930s. A foreign correspondent for the Chicago Tribune and the Universal News Service, he was in Vienna when CBS’s Edward R. Murrow hired him in 1937. War was threatening across Europe, and when Hitler seized Austria in the Anschluss of March 1938, Shirer—the first of “the Murrow Boys”—broadcast the events as they happened. The great era of broadcast news was soon launched as CBS began producing a thirty-minute European radio round-up from Berlin, Vienna, Paris, Rome, and London.

In addition to his broadcasting, Shirer wrote vivid accounts of history-in-the-making. He kept a journal detailing the coming of war and in 1941 published Berlin Diary: The Journal of a Foreign Correspondent, 1934–1941. His major study of Hitler’s rise was published in 1960 and became a phenomenal best-seller. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is still ranked as one of the highest-selling nonfiction books of all time.

Coltrane #24

National Portrait Gallery
Born Hamlet, North Carolina

Regarded as one of the greatest jazz saxophonists of all time, John Coltrane (1926-1967) initially performed in the late 1940s and 1950s with small ensembles fronted by musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis. He also struggled with drug and alcohol addiction before successfully overcoming these twin demons. In 1960, the year he scored a huge popular hit with his recording of "My Favorite Things," Coltrane established his own group-one that played his music and arrangements on albums including Giant Steps, A Love Supreme, and Ascension. Coltrane was a great breaker of musical forms, and by the end of his career he was playing long, improvisational compositions that sought an almost religious transcendence of the performer. Coltrane's style-both in the bebop era and in his later improvisations-continues to influence new generations of musicians.

Titled Coltrane #24, Roy DeCarava's photograph uniquely conjures the mood and intensity of a Coltrane performance.

Charles Schulz

National Portrait Gallery
Born Minneapolis, Minnesota

Creator of the beloved comic strip Peanuts, cartoonist Charles M. Schulz gave millions of newspaper readers something to look forward to each day. From the strip's debut on October 2, 1950, until its final original installment on February 13, 2000, Schulz delivered humor, warmth, and wisdom with the help of an endearing ensemble of characters that included Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus, Schroeder, and the irrepressible beagle, Snoopy. The strip's appeal extended well beyond the funny pages, inspiring a plethora of Peanuts offerings such as books, greeting cards, television specials, and toys that continue to reach new audiences.

In this portrait by renowned photographer Yousuf Karsh, Schulz is seen in his studio with pen in hand. On the drawing board before him is a partially completed Peanuts Sunday comic featuring the latest episode in the continuing saga of Charlie Brown, Lucy, and the snatched football.

Jim Henson

National Portrait Gallery
Born Greenville, Mississippi

Creator of the irrepressible Muppets, Jim Henson was just out of high school when he began creating puppets for local Washington, D.C., television shows in the 1950s. Henson experimented with various techniques to create an expressive performance, using soft materials instead of wood or papier mâche to produce flexible facial expressions. Using the television screen as his stage, he employed close-up shots to connect audiences with his characters. Henson’s Muppets first reached a national TV audience in the 1960s, with numerous variety show appearances, but it was their featured role on the educational children’s program Sesame Street (launched in 1969) and their star turn on The Muppet Show (1976–81) that made them a popular phenomenon. Although the Muppet cast includes such memorable characters such Miss Piggy, Big Bird, and the Cookie Monster, Henson was most closely identified with the lovable and chipper Kermit the Frog, for whom he provided both voice and animation.

Rodgers and Hammerstein

National Portrait Gallery

New York Yankees 1956

National Portrait Gallery

Brooklyn Dodgers 1955

National Portrait Gallery
Brooklyn Dodgers 1955

In the 1940s and 1950s, Branch Rickey, the co-owner of the Brooklyn, Dodgers, assembled one of the greatest teams in baseball history. This team picture from 1955—the year Brooklyn won its only World Series—includes Pee Wee Reese, Carl Furillo, Gil Hodges, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Don Newcombe, and Carl Erskine. At the team’s heart, however, was Major League Baseball’s first African American player, Jackie Robinson (back row, standing at far right). Rickey carefully selected Robinson (1919–1972) to “break the color barrier,” not only because of “Robbie’s” talent, but because he had faith in Robinson’s inner strength. He made Robinson promise not to respond for one year to racist taunts from fans and players. Robinson was rookie of the year in 1947. In his ten years as a Brooklyn Dodger, he led the team to six pennants and a World Series victory and ended his career with a batting average of .311.

Harry S Truman

National Portrait Gallery
Thirty-third President, 1945-53

The occasion for this Time cover portrait was President Harry Truman's dismissal of General Douglas MacArthur as commander of United Nations forces in the Korean conflict in April 1951. MacArthur's public criticism of Truman's refusal to expand Korean military operations into China-which was aiding Communist North Korea in its war on South Korea-clearly undermined Truman's credibility as commander-in-chief. Yet Time was not sympathetic to Truman's viewpoint and believed that MacArthur's criticisms were justified. While declaring MacArthur "the personification of the big man," Time described Truman as "almost a professional little man."

Truman's cover portrait was the work of the Russian-born artist Boris Chaliapin. Capable of producing a meticulous likeness in a matter of hours, Chaliapin was for years the artist Time used when it needed one of its portraits completed on short notice.

Time cover, April 23, 1951

Joan Baez

National Portrait Gallery
From the earliest years of her career, singer and activist Joan Baez has maintained an unwavering commitment to social, political, and humanitarian causes. A vital force in the folk music revival of the 1950s and 1960s, Baez was in her teens when she began singing and playing the guitar in Boston-area coffeehouses. Her performances at the 1959 and 1960 Newport Folk Festivals won her legions of fans and were followed by the release of a series of immensely popular recordings. Baez’s immersion in the civil rights movement was reflected in her growing repertoire of protest songs, and in 1963 she performed at the March on Washington. Strongly opposed to the Vietnam War, Baez participated in numerous antiwar protests. Jailed for “disturbing the peace,” she later explained that she was “trying to disturb the war.”

Baez came to this portrait session directly from Stanford University, where she had helped defuse tensions that threatened to spark an antiwar riot.

The Picnic

National Portrait Gallery
Mexican-born artist Marius de Zayas was closely associated with the avant-garde circle surrounding Alfred Stieglitz, the photographer and founder of 291, one of New York City’s most important galleries. In this 1912 drawing, de Zayas shows his compan ions careening precariously downhill on a hay wagon. He probably made the watercolor at Seven Springs, a farm near Mount Kisco, New York, owned by patrons Agnes Ernst Meyer and Eugene Meyer. In addition to the artist Katharine Rhoades in the driver’s seat, Agnes directly behind, and Eugene in the rear, the figures include Stieglitz, his wife Emmeline, painter John Marin, photographer Paul Haviland, and de Zayas himself (in a cap). The vivid colors and lively tangle of geometric forms convey the group’s high-spirited, playful side. But unset tling aspects of the scene hint at tensions within the group. Judging from a few nervous gestures and expressions, not everyone is enjoying this out-of control ride.

El artista de origen mexicano Marius de Zayas estuvo muy asociado con el círculo vanguardista de Alfred Stieglitz, fotógrafo y fundador de la galería 291, una de las más importantes de la ciudad de Nueva York. En este dibujo de 1912, De Zayas coloca a sus compañeros en una precaria carreta que se precipita cuesta abajo. Es probable que realizara la acuarela en Seven Springs, una granja cerca de Mount Kisco, Nueva York, propiedad de los mecenas Agnes Ernst Meyer y Eugene Meyer. Además de la artista Katharine Rhoades, quien lleva las riendas con Agnes detrás de ella y Eugene en la retaguardia, vemos a Stieglitz, su esposa Emmeline, el pintor John Marin, el fotógrafo Paul Haviland y De Zayas (con gorra). Los colores vivos y la animada combinación de formas geométricas comunican el espíritu lúdico y jovial del grupo. No obstante, se reflejan tensiones internas. A juzgar por ciertos gestos y expresiones nerviosas, no todos se divierten en este trayecto desbocado.