Exhibition Coming Soon

ARTIST ROOMS Self Evidence | Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe

Sat 6 Apr 2019 - Sun 20 Oct 2019

Open daily, 10am-5pm

Admission free


Highlighting the richness of the ARTIST ROOMS photography collection, which is jointly owned by National Galleries of Scotland and Tate, ARTIST ROOMS Self Evidence - Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe celebrates the work of three of the twentieth century’s most influential photographers. With a particular focus on self-portraiture and representation, the show explores the connections and similarities between these three Americans, each of whom produced bodies of work that were revolutionary, ground-breaking and at times controversial.

Francesca Woodman began exploring self-identity through photography at 13 years old and continued to experiment and develop her practice in the following decade, until her tragically early death in 1981. Her photographs speak to her agency in being both the subject and creator of the work. Drawing from the significant holding of Diane Arbus within ARTIST ROOMS, the exhibition will include the limited-edition portfolio, A Box of Ten Photographs (1969-1971), which was selected by Arbus herself and as such, can be seen as representing her creative expression and how she wished to be seen as a photographer. Finally a series of portraits of Robert Mapplethorpe explores the photographer’s varying personas, as expressed for the camera, and poignantly document his declining health as a result of having contracted AIDS. The exhibition will occur during the 30-year anniversary of his death.

The ARTIST ROOMS collection was established by Anthony d’Offay in 2008 through The d’Offay Donation, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Art Fund, and the Scottish and British Governments in 2008.

Image: Robert Mapplethorpe, Self Portrait, 1988 © Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation.


Event accessibility

Exhibition accessibility

  • Large print labels
  • Wheelchair access


Gallery facilities

The following facilities are available at the Gallery.

  • Information desk
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair access
  • Hearing loop
  • Accessible toilets
  • Wheelchairs available
  • Public toilets
  • Lockers (£1/£2)
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Buggy park
  • Seating throughout
  • Bike rack

Getting here

Located in the city centre on Queen Street, the Scottish National Portrait Gallery is easy to access.

  • Open daily, 10am-5pm
1 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JD

Related events

Related events


British Sign Language (BSL) Tour: ARTIST ROOMS Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe


Sat 4 May 2019

11am - 12:30pm



Amplified Tour: ARTIST ROOMS Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe


Sun 19 May 2019

11am - 12 noon


Lecture or talk

ARTIST ROOMS Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe: Exhibition Tour


Tue 21 May 2019

12:45 - 1:15pm



Gallery Social: ARTIST ROOMS Woodman, Arbus and Mapplethorpe (for anyone affected by dementia)


Fri 24 May 2019

10:30am - 12 noon


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Friends of the Galleries get free unlimited entry to all exhibitions, and enjoy a wide range of exclusive benefits including early exhibition access, special events and 10% discount in our cafes.

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