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These Beautiful Pictures Aim To Paint A Portrait Of Britain

Digital screens across the UK are displaying portraits of everyday Brits, and some familiar faces.

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A new nationwide photographic exhibition, Portrait of Britain, features 100 Britons on digital screens in shopping malls, train stations, and high streets across the UK. The art aims to highlight the “enduring power of the portrait” and celebrate the rich diversity and heritage of the country in 2016.

A portrait of Beth Costerton by Andrew Shaylor

Andrew Shaylor / Courtesy of British Journal of Photography / JC Decaux

Beth Costerton was originally photographed as part of the This Is Me exhibition of 50 portraits of children who have Down syndrome.

Portrait of Britain features photos taken by both professionals and amateurs, reflecting normal Brits going about their daily business and giving them a platform on screens that are usually reserved for models and celebrities.


The majority of the subjects photographed are everyday people, but there are also some familiar faces, such as Nadiya Hussain, last year's winner of The Great British Bake Off.

The exhibition was organised by the British Journal of Photography in conjunction with JCDecaux. The 100 portraits featured were selected from nearly 4,000 entries, showing a broad range of styles of contemporary photographic portraiture.


"Emily", by Christoph Soeder

Christoph Soeder / Courtesy of British Journal of Photography / JC Decaux

"Emily from the series Unfading featuring women affected by the auto-immune hair loss condition alopecia." – Christoph Soeder

"Home" is a recurring theme running throughout in a number of the images, along with stories of migration and integration, reflecting many people’s thoughts after the vote to leave the European Union.


Simon Bainbridge, editorial director of the British Journal of Photography, said: “Public art works well when it engages with its surroundings and local population. That’s what we wanted to do with Portrait of Britain. We wanted to show diversity in terms of who is being photographed, but we also wanted to see different ways of photographing.”


Matt Tucker is the UK Picture Editor for BuzzFeed and is based in London.

Contact Matthew Tucker at

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