City Faces

Visual Culture and Social Structure in Stockholm 1880-1930

Docent Rebecka Lennartsson, City Museum of Stockholm
Link to project:

The aim of City Faces is to interconnect, research and enrich two collections of urban cultural heritage of great interest. Stockholm City Museum has 400 000 photographic portraits. Stockholm City Archives manages the unique, digitized population accounting system Rotemansarchive. We aim to inventory and list the portrait collection in its entirety. Around 40 000 photographs will be digitazed. Other photography collections will also be connected to the project.

Computer-based face recognition will be developed and used to identify and connect the portrait collections to social data. The linking enriches the materials and creates unique opportunities for both micro historical and data-driven research. It will also provide opportunity for co-creating and sharing of knowledge. Potential for further enrichment and visualization will thereby be explored.

In-depth sub-studies concerning visual culture, social structure, urban cultural history and time-geography is carried out. Results will be presented through peer-reviewed and open access publications. In addition, the project will generate a cultural-historical exhibition and an international conference.

The overall purpose is to create radically new possibilities to enrich, research and visualize the city’s visual heritage and social structure during a period of intense urban development. The project is based on interdisciplinary research and collaboration with cultural heritage experts. The methods advanced will be applicable to other collections in museums and archives.