Other Artists Using Photos as Art: Joachim Schmid

Today, I spent the first half of the day printing images on fabric to sew onto the fabric collages I did earlier.  I hope to have these sewn and scanned to share with you by next week.  The rest of the afternoon, I spent reading about the history of the photo album on my back porch.

I came across the name of this German artist while doing research:  Joachim Schmid.  When I looked him up on-line, I discovered that he also has a blog, however, it was more of a web-site format.  I was particularly interested in his collection of photographs found on the street that he has been collecting for over 20 years.

^ No.83, Berlin, July 1990

Here is a snippet from an article I also found about this exhibition.  The rest of the article can be found here.

Indepth Arts News:

“Two exhibitions by Joachim Schmid”
2001-08-11 until 2001-10-13
Museum of Contemporary Photography
Chicago, IL, USA

PICTURES FROM THE STREET, and STATICS both by prominent German artist Joachim Schmid, both containing media collected on the street and in his mailbox.He then arranges the media into fantastic visual archives.

For almost twenty years, Joachim Schmid (Germany, born 1955) has collected photographs found on the street. Nearly all of these discarded or lost images depict people in family snapshots that were never intended for public display. Schmids sequencing of the pictures, combined with the weathered and damaged appearance of the photographs themselves, creates a fascinating visual archive that suggests particular stories that cannot be read with any certainty.

^ The Photographers’ Gallery, London 2007

More images from this exhibition can be found here.

I particularly like how these snap shots are all discarded photos and yet they have been carefully glued back together and honored and remembered and shared with the public.  It reminded me of the photos that my family didn’t want when we were separating our grandmother’s photos.  An earlier post about this can be found here.  It brings up the question of how people in the photos would feel about being immortalized in this way.  Many people discard their photos for a reason.  They don’t feel they are worth keeping, or they want to forget the memory that the photo captured.  I wonder how my family would feel about me cutting up all these images and making fictional stories about their lives.  For all I know they would be horrified by being placed next to “Aunt Martha” (made up name) for she was never nice to them. (fiction)  Well, you get my point.

How would YOU feel about having YOUR picture cut up and re-imagined?  Or, discover that someone found a photo that you meant to go in the trash only to find out that it is now in a exhibition?



Filed under Inspiration, Other Artists

3 responses to “Other Artists Using Photos as Art: Joachim Schmid

  1. vrolli20

    Hi Anna,

    To answer your question, I have already lived through having a horrible picture displayed of me at my grandmother’s house. I just let it go, but one day I got out the sharpie and blotted out my ridiculous looking hair-do. I looked like Albert Einstein before the magic marker fix-up. I also recall having a picture of me looking into a circus mirror that distorts the figure. I remember getting so upset at my brother for taunting me about the picture that I demanded to have it and immediately ripped it up. I wonder how Joachim Schmid would have rearranged that one. Anyway, thanks for sharing… I always enjoy looking at your blog.

  2. angray20

    There are definitely some photos I’ve thrown away of myself that I would not want anyone to see….but some of these works remind of the film Amelie….mainly the photobooth ones

  3. I’ve found a few pictures on the street myself and gave them ever changing stories. I did put one in a shadowbox but there were no faces involved. I am fascinated by finding notes and children’s drawings or homework.

    As for someone finding and using a photo of me, I am pretty paranoid and make good use of the shredder whenever possible. Yikes, if I didn’t want to see it I don’t want a bunch of strangers to see it.

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