As part of a month-long series of studio portraits, the National Gallery of Art held a public exhibition Wednesday of 30 works by the late, great Michael Bayne.

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“These prints...hold the key to something incredible,” said curator of contemporary American art Paul Engelhardt, noting that the newly discovered footage from Bayne’s career raises the tantalizing possibility of a life-altering collision between print and digital, a migration that would radically alter the way we see and experience the world around us.

“They show us something truly unique about Michael Bayne—his uncompromising, beautiful eyes, delicate skin, silky hair—but also something that is almost too amazing to believe.” Engelhardt went on to say that further research was necessary before the public could even look at the photos, which were likely destroyed decades ago.