Being Present brings together more than 100 portrait busts by Pieter Hugo since the early 2000s, offering a broad overview of the artist's engagement with this particular portrait tradition. The selected photographs address the lexicons of criminology, surveillance and typologies while keeping a strong humanism at their core. In Hugo's words: "My work is about being a stranger: I feel like I inhabit this space myself and adopt this notion in order to engage with the people I photograph. I almost always start my work by introducing myself: I look, and they look back at me. When you create a portrait, the cynicism disappears for a brief moment. There is beauty in being held in the gaze of the other. "An intimacy emerges from this presence, and what emerges from these images is a moment of stillness and connection separate from anything that has gone before or after.
Exhibition presented as part of the Africa2020 Season. With the support of Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town.
Commissaire de l’exposition : Federica Angelucci.