Museum at Rutgers showcases hundreds of old selfies taken by mys - New York News

'445 Portraits of a Man'

Museum at Rutgers showcases hundreds of old selfies taken by mystery man

Posted: Updated:
NEW JERSEY (MYFOXNY.COM) -

Academics are trying to unravel the mystery of exactly who is the guy who left behind hundreds of pictures detailing decades of his life. In the photos, he's usually wearing a tie, sometimes a fedora. He's always clean cut, but sometimes goofy. The mystery man took his own picture hundreds of times, decades before the "selfie" was born.

"We can imagine all sorts of stories, we can imagine his life, but we don't know anything about him," said Donna Gustafson, the curator at Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University.

The collection called "445 Portraits of a Man" is part of the exhibit "Striking Resemblance; The Changing Art of Portraiture." The pictures show the man's hair went from thick and black to thin and white, many of them taken over the course of 20 years.

"It gives you insight into who he was," said Angela Bouton, a student. "You can see his dress, and how he styled his hair, how he was feeling that day."

Curators believe most of the pictures were taken in a Photomatic photo booth from the Great Depression to the 1960s. And there are theories behind who he is.

"He was the man who either owned the store where the machine was located and it was his responsibility to make sure it was working everyday so he would make sure it was working and then he saved all of these pictures," Gustafson said.

Some of the prints were found at an auction house in Michigan. Others were found at an antique show in New York City.

Now the collection is together until July 13. Also at the exhibit is a modern-day photo booth for gallery-goers to take their own selfies and compare.

"It's cool to see how it's changed but the idea is still there to portray who you are, to show everyone what you're about," student Leeza Cinar said.

  • New Jersey NewsNew Jersey NewsMore>>

  • NJ National Guard unit to deploy to Persian Gulf

    NJ National Guard unit to deploy to Persian Gulf

    Friday, August 1 2014 8:34 PM EDT2014-08-02 00:34:45 GMT
    More citizen soldiers will be leaving New Jersey for the Middle East. Nearly 170 troops will depart the National Guard armory in Jersey City on Saturday for duty in the Persian Gulf.
    More citizen soldiers will be leaving New Jersey for the Middle East. Nearly 170 troops will depart the National Guard armory in Jersey City on Saturday for duty in the Persian Gulf.
  • Thousands come out for Blake Shelton's free beach show in Atlantic City

    Thousands come out for Blake Shelton's free beach show in Atlantic City

    Friday, August 1 2014 4:29 PM EDT2014-08-01 20:29:15 GMT
    Country music star and "The Voice" coach Blake Shelton played a free concert on the beach in Atlantic City in front of more than 60,000 fans Thursday night, promoters said. He performed on a stage build on the beach near The Pier at Caesars. Fans that couldn't get into the beach area could hear and watch from the Boardwalk and from boats moored in the water nearby.
    Country music star and "The Voice" coach Blake Shelton played a free concert on the beach in Atlantic City in front of more than 60,000 fans Thursday night, promoters said. He performed on a stage build on the beach near The Pier at Caesars. Fans that couldn't get into the beach area could hear and watch from the Boardwalk and from boats moored in the water nearby.
  • Home owned by Trump holdout sells at auction

    Home owned by Trump holdout sells at auction

    She once called Donald Trump "a maggot, a cockroach and a crumb." This week, he remembered her as "an impossible person."
    An Atlantic City-area real estate figure has bought at auction a property that earned its owner near-folk hero status for resisting decades of overtures from developers...
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices