Taylor Wessing: Photographic Portrait Prize, National Portrait Gallery - ★★★★ - Until February 16, 2020

Gail and Beaux by Pat Martin, 2018. © Pat Martin

The Taylor Wessing prize is a wonderful introduction to contemporary portrait photography. This year saw 3,700 submissions from 1,611 artists from 70 countries. The judges selected 55 portraits from 31 artists for display and have created a wonderfully intimate experience. So many exhibitions overwhelm with the volume of the work on display, but this is a lovely small exhibition that offers just enough to whet one's appetite for more. There is some amazing work here which gives us a glimpse into lives and characters from some an amazingly diverse groups. We meet individuals from fascinatingly different backgrounds, and each portrait resonates with meaning, striking chords of recognition while also inviting us to contemplate some very different realities. The 2019 exhibition also includes the In Focus display which this year features the work of Ethan James Green focusing on couples in New York's Lower East Side. For us a great part of the fun is to second guess the judges' awards, so be sure to vote on your favourite as you exit!

Reviewed by J.C.

 Our Score:  ☆☆☆☆ 

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WHEN, WHERE, GETTING THERE:
Until February 16, 2020
Sat - Thu: 10 am - 6 pm, Fri: 10 am - 9 pm
National Portrait Gallery
Nearest station: Leicester Square
https://www.npg.org.uk/whatson/taylor-wessing-photographic-portrait-prize-2019/exhibition/

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