–  Clemens Sels Museum Neuss

Wish & Reality

The influence of photography on the portrait

A good 100 million photos - the majority of them portraits - are shared daily on the social network Instagram and thus made accessible to a broad public. The inherent human need for flawless self-portrayal in the sense of commercially disseminated ideals of beauty has by no means existed only since the invention of digital media.

In its fall exhibition, the Clemens Sels Museum Neuss therefore addressed the question of the influence of photography on the development of artistic portraiture in the 19th and 20th centuries. The proverbial focus was on photography as a "competing medium" that posed new challenges to portrait painting. In order to highlight the boundaries between photographic and artistic portrayal of the model, the diverse collection of portraits was juxtaposed with historical photographs of the persons portrayed.


Or follow us on our social media channels.