Since February is the month of love, we're sending you lots of virtual hearts, flowers and warm wishes in this newsletter. But more importantly, we've engineered a mention of a significant anniversary, have brought you news of some fascinating exhibitions and events, and are reminding you of another aspect of our extensive film collection. Read on for a (not very) romantic round-up.

175 years of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers

A significant anniversary this year offers the opportunity to remind you of a particularly interesting contributor collection. Founded in Birmingham in 1847, the original statement of purpose of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers was, 'To give an impulse to invention likely to be useful to the world' - not so different from their present statement which is, 'improving the world through engineering.'

We represent over 2500 images from the Institution's archive, among which you can find examples of early steam engines, the construction of some of the world's most famous landmarks, pioneers in motoring and aviation, and maps that show the expansion of transport links from the Roman road system to the American railroads. There is an X-ray of an early hip replacement, an experimental gas bus, a portrait of an elderly Edward Entwhistle, who had been George Stephenson's fireman on the Rocket, and all manner of technological innovations that have indeed been useful to the world.

Click here for a constructive and turbo-charged selection.

Peter Akehurst and Hubertus Kanus

We were saddened to learn recently of the deaths of two of the library's photographic contributors, Peter Akehurst and Hubertus Kanus.

Peter began his career as a photojournalist but moved into fashion photography, becoming David Bailey's first assistant and sharing a studio with Lord Snowdon. It was his work as a staff photographer for the hip and happening London Life magazine, part of the ILN archive, that connected Peter to us here at the library. As well as his work for the magazine, we also represent Peter's fashion and celebrity photographs from the 1970s and '80s including some arresting portraits of figures such as boxer Henry Cooper and writer, Chester Himes. The photograph here, taken by Terence Donovan, shows Peter in 1965, flanked by four female members of staff from London Life magazine.

Click here to view a selection of Peter's images.

Hubertus Kanus was a long-standing contributor to Barnaby's Picture Library before the collection came under the ownership of Mary Evans, and during his travels around the globe continued to provide us with photographs of cities and sites with a historical flavour right up until his later years.

You can browse Hubertus's globe-trotting collection here.

Behind the Roar - the 1920s at the National Archives

A new exhibition at the National Archives looks back a hundred years at the 1920s, and aims to reveal there was more to the decade than the charleston, jazz and cocktails. 'Behind the Roar' invites visitors to experience what life was really like, the grit behind the glamour of the Roaring Twenties you may have heard about.

You'll be able to explore a day in the 1920s through international peace treaties, textile samples, lonely heart adverts and much more; followed by the opportunity to step into a recreation of a nightclub - the infamous 43 Club in Soho - with all the grit, glamour and associated sights and sounds.

We have been delighted to supply a number of images for this fascinating-sounding exhibition, including a number that will be used as life-size cut-outs for photo opportunities. 'Behind the Roar' is on at the National Archives until 11th June.

More information here.

Death on the Nile

Kenneth Branagh sticks on his preposterous moustache and returns to cinema screens this month in his second outing as Hercule Poirot in Agatha Christie's 'Death on the Nile'.

It's the perfect excuse to remind you of the superb stills, behind-the-scenes images and publicity shots we have of the 1978 film version (via our exclusive representation of Studiocanal) starring Peter Ustinov as Poirot heading a stellar ensemble cast that includes Angela Lansbury, David Niven, Olivia Hussey, Mia Farrow, Maggie Smith and Bette Davis.

And for anyone who has their own Agatha Christie research mystery to solve, we've some interesting material on her life and career, from newspaper reports of her sensational disappearance in 1926 to book jackets as well as portraits and places associated with the mistress of murder mystery.

Robin Dale - Ballad of a Country Camera

Born in Stockon-on-Tees in 1940, Robin Dale's photographs are a clear-eyed, witty and often tender tribute to the people and places around his native Teesside. MIMA in Middlesbrough is showing Ballad of a Country Camera, a photo-slide show of the rural aspects of the area by Robin in 1980 and there is still time to see Part 2 of this on 2 March.

Using traditional 2 inch square slides, it has nine specific sequences, each dealing with one aspect of the area. Many of the photo sequences are based on the Cleveland songs written by Graeme Miles between 1960 and 1970. For more details visit the MIMA Website while you can read more about Robin and his photography in this Collection of the Week.

Let us know what you think

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Mary Evans Picture Library Ltd.  59 Tranquil Vale  Blackheath  London  SE3 0BS. United Kingdom.
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