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PortraitThis exhibition contains some quirky and early examples of a fascination with humor, medical objectivity, and seeing people from different perspectives. The portrait does not have to be taken face-on and there have been exceptions to that general rule throughout the history of photography.
An Aversion to Face
Most of these examples are surprisingly objective.
The woman with a concealed egg-shaped tumour on her head was photographed from the back and front. The snapshot study of the woman’s beautifully coiffed hair to the snap of the man with advanced alopecia. The medical analysis of sclerosis in turn of the century Germany. And finally the poetic view of a post-war couple admiring the vista while still in bandaged traction.
These examples pursue a sense of the open ended, be it, the life lived under adverse medical conditons or the frivolties of Victorian friendship before the camera. All serve to enable a different, if slightly more contentious, relationship to the formal role of the camera