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Self-Portrait Studying a Just-developed Negative, Sparks Street Studio, Ottowa / Yousuf Karsh

 Collection — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS 8627

Scope and Contents

Materials include one photograph by Yousuf Karsh. The photograph is a self-portrait, depicting Karsh looking through a negative of a portrait of a man in profile. Materials dated 1944.


  • 1944


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical / Historical

Yousuf Karsh (1908-2002) was a Turkish-born Canadian portrait photographer. Yousuf Karsh was born 23 December 1908 in Madin, Turkey. He immigrated to Canada in 1924 to live with his uncle, George Nakash, a photographer in Sherbrooke, Quebec. He assisted his uncle in his studio before being apprenticed to John Garo, a portrait photographer in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1928. In 1931, he started working with John Powls in Ottawa, Ontario. Karsh took over Powls’s studio when Powls retired in 1933 and his first solo exhibition took place in 1936 in the Chateau Laurier hotel. Karsh moved his studio to this same hotel in 1973 and remained there until he retired in 1992. Karsh gained prominence with his 1941 portrait of Winston Churchill and was known throughout his career for his portraits of other prominent and powerful individuals, including Queen Elizabeth II, Ernest Hemingway, Fidel Castro, John F. Kennedy, Eleanor Roosevelt, Albert Einstein, Audrey Hepburn, and Grace Kelly. He married Estrellita Nachbar, a medical writer and historian in 1962. He returned to Boston in the 1990s and died there on 13 July 2002.


1 photograph (0.01 linear ft.) : b&w ; 27.5 x 35.5 cm

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Kept in cold storage; access requires 24 hours advance notice.

Custodial History

Materials were purchased by L. Tom Perry Special Collections from Charles Schwartz Ltd. in 2014.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased; from Charles Schwartz Ltd.; 2014.


Photographs (Photograph Archives).

Processing Information

Processed; Anne Ashton, student photograph processor; 2014.

Register of Self-Portrait Studying a Just-developed Negative, Sparks Street Studio, Ottowa / Yousuf Karsh
Anne Ashton
18 December 2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States