Portrait of our time

Portrait of our time

©Agnete Brun, Pia Tjelta, 2008. Belongs to the Preus Museums collection

From 24.10.20
To 05.04.21

The portrait is everywhere, and part of a greater visual culture! The new Portrait Of Our Time exhibition at Preus Museum will present a selection of portraits from the last 15 years. It will be a showcase of how one of the oldest photographic genres is still very much alive and exploratory.

The portrait is a significant part of photography. When we study the history of photography, we find that photographic portraits were explored ever since the invention of functioning techniques, such as the daguerreotype . We recognize the portrait from memory images, through the act of going to the photographer, through fine art, from moving images to documentaries, and the use of portrait as identification.

The portrait is like a time capsule; something left behind for the next generation. The portrait is also a self-representation of both the photographer and the person portrayed. In this sense it is equally ubiquitous and specifically typical of its time (the latter is easier noticed in retrospect). In modern times, the importance of photographic portraits havehas achieved greater collective acceptance. Whether a portrait is considered interesting or important is no longer solely based on its pleasing visual qualities, but rather how the portrait itself speaks of its own contemporary existence.

This exhibition showcases a selection of contemporary portraits, from 2005 to 2020. It is an extended exploration of the theme “portrait”, building upon images originally intended for another exhibition curated as part of the Day of Photography on the 13th of June 2020, which was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.




(click on the link to see a presentation)


Selection from the museum collection



© Verena Winkelmann, fra serien Fathers
© Ronny Rønning, fra prosjektet Soria Moria
© Hedvig Biong og Pablo Castilla
© Andrea Gjestvang, fra prosjektet "En dag i historien"