In this paper I examine my two years of research culminating towards my thesis exhibition. The paper shows the development of my work within the framework of the portrait. I discuss my artistic production with analysis of concept, process and my relationship with the history of portraiture. Central to my thesis exhibition installation is the concept of performance and engagement in an experience. My work examines the role of the viewer and the function of perception through the visual theme of the ‘performative’. My installation pieces are intended to describe the sincerity of my relationship with my model and mediums as well as alter the gallery space into a stage with which the viewer participates. This suggests an encouragement of the viewer to participate in an interpretation and reaction.