Norway’s First Paparazzi – Carl M. Størmer (1874-1957)

This just came across my desk from Ernie Beers, who is writing an article about a more local photographer, Hattie Goodnow, for the upcoming PHSNE Journal.

Norway's first paparazzi IbsenEarly 1890’s: Famous playwright Henrik Ibsen photographed by Carl M. Størmer

“I was a young 19 year-old student at the time and had gotten hold of a funny detective camera.” This is how Carl M. Størmer describes his new and amusing hobby in the St. Hallvard Journal from 1942.

In his portfolio we find photographs of the most famous Norwegian, playwright Henrik Ibsen as he strutted down Karl Johan’s street in Oslo – most likely unaware of the shooting. At that time, Størmer was a mathematician and Aurora Borealis specialist.


Norway's first paparazzi self portraitLong before the professional paparazzi began to make life miserable for celebrities, Størmer was a pioneer in the rather dubious hobby of secret photography.

In the 1890’s, he walked around in Oslo – often along main street Karl Johan – with a hidden camera and took pictures of famous men and women.

Størmer called Henrik Ibsen “an excellent object”,

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