Museum at Rutgers showcases hundreds of old selfies taken by mys - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

'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>>

  • Massive brawl at NJ wedding

    Massive brawl at NJ wedding

    Monday, July 28 2014 2:24 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:24:34 GMT
    As many as 300 people became involved in a massive brawl at a New Jersey wedding hall that ended with two arrests on Sunday night.  Middletown police say that the fight broke out at about 10:30 p.m. at the Jacques Reception Hall on Palmer Ave. in Middletown.
    As many as 300 people became involved in a massive brawl at a New Jersey wedding hall that ended with two arrests on Sunday night.  Middletown police say that the fight broke out at about 10:30 p.m. at the Jacques Reception Hall on Palmer Ave. in Middletown.
  • 3 NJ mayors to announce anti-crime plan

    3 NJ mayors to announce anti-crime plan

    Monday, July 28 2014 9:03 AM EDT2014-07-28 13:03:29 GMT
    The mayors of three of New Jersey's largest cities are announcing a joint initiative to combat violent crime. Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop and Paterson Mayor Jose Torres have scheduled a news conference in Jersey City for Monday afternoon to announce the plan. The news conference is being held in one of Jersey City's most crime-plagued neighborhoods.
    The mayors of three of New Jersey's largest cities are announcing a joint initiative to combat violent crime. Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop and Paterson Mayor Jose Torres have scheduled a news conference in Jersey City for Monday afternoon to announce the plan. The news conference is being held in one of Jersey City's most crime-plagued neighborhoods.
  • Woman gets 20-year prison term for fatal stabbing

    Woman gets 20-year prison term for fatal stabbing

    Sunday, July 27 2014 2:32 PM EDT2014-07-27 18:32:05 GMT
    A southern New Jersey woman who fatally stabbed a man last year during an argument in his home has been sentenced to 20 years in state prison.
    A southern New Jersey woman who fatally stabbed a man last year during an argument in his home has been sentenced to 20 years in state prison.
Powered by WorldNow

WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
485 S. Highland St.
Memphis, TN 38111

Main Station: (901) 320-1313
Newsroom: (901) 320-1340

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices