A Portrait Story, the two-week long exhibition took place in Taragaon Museum and was curated by Shivangi Bansal and the museum director, Mr. Roshan Mishra. Through this exhibition, the curators sought to deliver a journey of portraiture in Nepal, its evolution through various mediums and a range of artists. They provided the audience a space to think about how they view oneself in the age of our ever-changing popular culture. Through this collection a shift and growth in self-expression- through stories of religion, aging, culture, survival, duty, euphoria, pride, struggle and modern technology were exhibited.
This exhibition brought together masters of portraiture as well as novices to interchange ideas and to draw parallels within their work and their peers. ‘A Portrait Story’ brought a large chunk of the local art scene together by organizing two panel discussions as well.
The first panel discussion discussed issues around artists’ perspectives on portraiture and their relation with their self portraits, its economic viability and its social importance in the digital era. The panelists for this session were Shreejan Rajbhandari, Hit man Gurung, Uma Bista, Roshan Bhandari and it was moderated by Roshan Mishra, the co-curator of the exhibition.
The second panel discussion was conducted towards the end of the exhibition which discussed the curator’s perspective on portraiture. The panelists for this discussion were Sangeeta Thapa, Nayantara Gurung and Roshan Mishra and it was moderated by ShivangI Bansal. It gave a deeper insight of portraiture as the panelists spoke about anecdotes from their experiences and how portraiture has evolved through the years.
The Portrait of a Portrait Collection has been created in collaboration with a accomplished photographer, Sumir Shrestha to capture the emotion and expression of the artist and bring them to the forefront visually with their works in the background.
It is an additional layer presented to the viewers to connect and understand not only their personal interpretations but possibly even to study the artist’s visual expression of who they are. In this compilation only 24 out of 47 artists were able to participate in this collection. Sumir has been able to bring forward a very real and close representation of the artist with his/her work and that within itself can also be critiqued as another portrait for this already extensive collection.