Madame Yevonde 1893 - 1975

born in:
London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom

Photographer, born Yevonde Philone Cumbers (later Middleton, known as Madame Yevonde); educated in UK and abroad at various boarding schools and convents; in 1910 while still a student on the continent, Yevonde joined the women's suffrage movement, and on her return to Britain she continued to promote female emancipation; took up photography assisting Lallie Charles, one of the leading portrait photographers of the day, and was accepted for three years' tuition at Charles's studio at 39A Curzon Street in London's Mayfair; six months before completing her apprenticeship, and only ever having taken one photograph, Yevonde left Charles's employ and in 1914 opened her own studio at 92 Victoria Street, London; made her name photgraphing celebrities, employing a distinctive style, and also establlished herself in the new field of advertising photography with her distinctive series of advertisements for Eno's Fruit Salts; took up Vivex colour process in 1930s, exhibiting her famous 'Godesses' series of portraits in 1935; 1940 she was elected as a fellow of the Royal Photographic Society for her work in colour photography; her husband, the playwright and journalist Edgar Charles William Middleton (c.1895–1939), whom she married on 13 February 1920, died in April 1939; with the war she stopped taking colour photographs, but continued to take black and white photographs throughout the 1950s and 1960s.