I collect antique and vintage photos since a very long time. I was maybe 14 or 15 when I first started to buy them at the flea market or in antique shops. I really wanted to have things that are very old, to start a “collection of antiques” and the photos were at that point the only affordable things. But, on the other hand, I was also fascinated by the people in these pictures and by the scarce and mysterious information that sometimes a handwritten inscription or the stamp of the photographer on the back of the photo could provide. Also, how were these people forgotten, how did their photos end up in a pile at the flea market? How fragile and unreliable is the memory perpetuated through family relations?
I had long periods of time in which I disliked this collection, I hid it in a box and chose to forget about it. All those images of unknown people seemed like a burden. But a few years ago, I rediscovered my collection, from multiple reasons: my rejuvenated interest in photography (some of these antique photos are so beautiful), a still vague intuition about a text I want to write about the objects that outlive us, etc.
So, from time to time I will show here pieces from this collection. This example is the most extreme when it comes to feeling uneasy around these photos. But still, I think it’s also beautiful, in a melancholy, creepy kind of way. This two- sided pendant has photos that fade away. When I bought it at the flea market in spring, the portraits were faded but still really visible. These photos were taken in summer. Now, the woman and man almost disappeared from their silver frame. I keep the pendant in a closed box to slow down the process as much as possible, but very soon there will remain only these digital photos.