Absence Portraits A photography project by Lissa Rivera

Absence Portraits is a project by New York-based photographer Lissa Rivera:

Found photographs have intrinsic qualities that shape our perceptions of an image and inform our
understanding of its time, place, and socioeconomic circumstances. By digitally removing the
person from old cabinet card portraits, Rivera reveals an artificial environment created by the
photographer to heighten the perception of the subject. Bereft of the individual, only a stage
remains. The tension between presence and absence is heightened by the placement of objects
that were meant to compliment the body of a person no longer there. The stage that we see is a
perfect tableaux of projected desires and fantasies. In an attempt to transcend class and location
during a time when photography was mostly restricted to the studio, a virtual environment is
created which eerily resonates with our digital age.

Monthly Photo Contest

color portrait of an elderly woman by Can Sever
© Can Sever

2022 Visual Storytelling AWARD Deadline: 31 January 2022

The art of visual storytelling encompasses a wide range of possibilities with at its heart, the will to tell a story.

From classic social documentary to imaginative storytelling: this month we are seeking visual artists aiming to captivate; unique voices willing to share their stories with conviction and awareness.⁠

Portrait, street, documentary, landscape: All approaches are valid. Enter now and show us YOUR stories!


1st Prize: $1000 · 2nd Prize: $600 · 3rd Prize: $400

Submit Now

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