The Found Film Project consists of an online archive gallery of photographs captured on film between the 1930’s and late 1990’s
All photographs were recovered from undeveloped rolls of found film contributed by people from all around the world.
Over 70 years ago, an American WWII soldier filled 31 rolls of film with pictures. The film was never developed. In 2014, the Rescued Film Project recovered all 31 rolls.
The Found Photography genre – broadly speaking – centres upon recovering lost or discarded photographs, where the subsequent presenter of those photographs neither knows anything about the photographer nor the people in them. It is now quite a popular hobby, which probably had its origins in the early 20th century when photography itself was not that old. However, it has not been embraced by the international art community, although there are arguments for found photography as art. For example, it is classed as found art, and it is the exhibitor’s presentation and their method of such that makes found photography art because it affects the meanings that viewers take from it.
From time to time, one hears about some notable discoveries of old photography that has never been seen by anyone at all, including the original photographer. In 2014, the Film Rescue Project was presented with the challenging task of attempting to recover images from more than two dozen rolls of undeveloped film from the World War II era, all taken by an American soldier. That’s the story in this video. But there is also an added feature of interest here too: another interesting past production about found photography (more specifically found snapshot photography) below. It is called ‘Other People’s Pictures’, an award winning documentary film about the obsessiveness of vintage snapshot collectors and the varying reasons for what they do upon being asked the question of why they buy other people’s family photos.
Other People’s Pictures Film and Radio Interview
Nine obsessive collectors share an unlikely addiction: snapshots that have been abandoned or lost by their original owners and are now for sale. Ready to pay hundreds of dollars for a single picture, they hunt for the images that feed their fantasies and quiet the voices in their heads. See what they find and learn why they want it in this surprising look at the little-known world of vintage snapshot collecting.
‘Other People’s Pictures’: a documentary by Lorca Shepperd and Cabot Philbrick
Download and watch the trailer »
Listen to the radio interview »
Pictures courtesy of Other People’s Pictures