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Documenting the body

– The history of the Finnish passport
Fri 17.1. – Sun 24.5.2020
Photo: The National Archives of Finland
Kuvaaja: The National Archives of Finland
A passport is a document that affects the body's movements and opens doors, but only if the body is clearly linked to the passport. In the 19th century, when the authority who had issued the passport was identified by ornamental designs and stamps, often the only information given on the holder was their name.

A passport is a document that affects the body's movements and opens doors, but only if the body is clearly linked to the passport. In the 19th century, when the authority who had issued the passport was identified by ornamental designs and stamps, often the only information given on the holder was their name.

Photographs were not attached to the passport to aid identification until World War I, and for the first couple of decades the photos were studio portraits meant for personal use, shots taken outdoors by the village photographer or faces cut out from wedding photographs.

It was not until after World War II that the passport photograph began to evolve into a type of its own, with origins in 19th century forensics and anthropometry. With the biometric passport – now designed to be read by machines – the body became an even more intrinsic part of the travel and identification document.

Despite the complex history of the passport, its purpose remains largely unchanged: on the one hand, it is a recommendation letter from the issuer intended to open doors to the carrier, and on the other hand, it is an identification document that answers the question: Who are you?

Documenting the body – The history of the Finnish passport is an exhibition by the Banaali valvonta project, funded by the Academy of Finland, and the Finnish Museum of Photography, introducing the history of the Finnish passport.

Curators: Asko Lehmuskallio (associate professor, University of Tampere), Paula Haara (researcher, University of Tampere), Tiina Rauhala (acting chief curator, Finnish Museum of Photography), Anna Björklund (trainee curator, Finnish Museum of Photography) and Max Fritze (curator, collections, Finnish Museum of Photography).

Event organizer

Suomen valokuvataiteen museo

Suomen valokuvataiteen museo on valtakunnallinen valokuvan erikoismuseo Kaapelitehtaalla Helsingissä, jonka näyttelyt esittelevät monipuolisesti valokuvan ja visuaalisen kulttuurin eri osa-alueita ja historiaa. Taidevalokuvan lisäksi näyttelysisällöissä painottuvat myös uutiskuva ja mainoskuva. Näyttelyihin liittyvät opastukset, työpajat, taiteilijatapaamiset ja luennot tutustuttavat kaikenikäisiä valokuvauksen nykypäivään ja historiaan.

time and place

Lataa kalenteriisi Fri 17.1.2020 to Sun 24.5.2020 Lataa kalenteriisi
    

Information

Broad-based competence
Type of event
Price
School or kindergarten group tours: 45 €. For kindergartens, primary schools and secondary schools. Teachers who have booked guided tours for school groups are welcome to visit the exhibition in advance, free of charge.