Bettina von Zwehl

Bettina von Zwehl


Portrait of a Whippet


b/w bromide UNFRAMED

Image size: 24cmH x 21cmW

Print size: 24cmH x 21cmW

Edition of 25

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+ About the work

Portrait of a Whippet, 2019 is from the artist’s ongoing series of small and dramatic dog portraits. The series of works draws inspiration from the painted miniature portraits of dogs that were popular in the Victorian era. Often commissioned to treasure and commemorate a beloved animal, these subtly affecting photographic portraits transform an everyday moment into a precious jewel, where time stands still, and losses are obliterated.

Von Zwehl has said of this series of works: “I am drawn to the unpredictability of the unleashed dog in the studio environment. I wait and hope for the serendipitous moment where the gaze and the posture of the dog fall exactly to into place.”

+ About the artist

Bettina von Zwehl has built an international reputation for her subtle and unnerving photographic portraits. From early works in which she photographed subjects under a range of exacting conditions to more recent projects that reprise the traditions of the painted miniature and silhouette, she has consistently explored the nature and limits of the photographic portrait. Von Zwehl was artist-in-residence at the Victoria & Albert Museum (2011), the Freud Museum in London (2013–14) and at the New-York Historical Society Museum (2018). In 2017-18 she received a grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation (USA). Solo exhibitions of her work have been held at a number of leading European and American museums and galleries, including the New-York Historical Society Museum (NYC, 2018), The Freud Museum (London, 2016), Fotogalkeriet(Oslo, 2015) National Portrait Gallery (London, 2014), Centrum KulturyZamek (Poznan, 2011), V&A Museum of Childhood (London, 2009), The Photographers’ Gallery (London 2005) and Lombard Freid gallery (New York, 2004). Her photographs are held in the collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina; Victoria and Albert Museum, Arts Council Collection, London; The National Portrait Gallery, London; the Rubell Family Collection, Miami, Florida; and Pier 24 Photography, San Francisco.