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Image of Peter Lorre

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908–2002

Peter Lorre


Object Type: Photograph
18 in. x 16 in. (45.72 cm x 40.64 cm)
Medium and Support: Gelatin silver print on paper
Accession Number: 2013.0005.0044

Credit Line: Gift of Estrellita Karsh, in honor of Mark M. Johnson, and in memory of Yousuf Karsh
Copyright: © Estate of Yousuf Karsh

Peter Lorre (1904–1964) Born László Lowenstein in Hungary in 1904, Lorre began his acting career in the theater at the age of seventeen and first appeared in an English-language film in 1934. Lorre became well known in the “Mr. Moto” films and appeared with Humphrey Bogart in The Maltese Falcon (1941) and Casablanca (1942). On screen, Peter Lorre was often the bumbling sidekick of the arch villain; however, Karsh found him to be a gentleman of wit and culture. In this portrait commissioned by Life Magazine, Karsh felt the dramatic effect of the lamplight on Lorre’s face synthesized every character he played in American films.

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