SPOTLIGHT: Michael Peto

Photojournalist Michael Peto was born in Bata, Hungary in 1908 and moved to London in the beginning of World War II in 1939. Peto first started work as a writer and later developed his interest in photography in an attempt to illustrate his texts. Peto died in 1970 and his large archive of negatives and vintage prints was donated to the University of Dundee.


Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton by Michael Peto, 1963
© University of Dundee The Peto Collection

The black and white photographs display the portraits of well known figures such as Nelson Mandela, Elizabeth Tailor, Samuel Beckett, the Beatles, and many others. The tone that Peto’s photographs portray is personal and private.

The collection is now exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery until the 1st June 2014. This is a season exhibition and will later be on display in The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at the Lincoln Center in New York and at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh.


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