Tuesday, August 25, 2009

When Boredom Strikes by Joachim Schmid



When I first wrote about Joachim Schmid I asked several questions about the current state of mass image making; with all of the images that exist, is their continued proliferation necessary especially in a time now where cell phones now have cameras? We are producing more images than ever, could the reliance on images and visual material alter our vocabularies and the evolution of our ways of communication? Is this all just one more metaphoric example of how we do things impulsively and fill our lives with objects that we tend to store away and ignore until we decide to clean house? So the next time you aim the cell phone camera or put the Leica to your eye, consider what it is that you are bringing into this world. Is it necessary? Will you love it and take care of it? Or will they fall into the hands of others to see what we can no longer see?

Schmid has continued his investigation into the habits of amateur photography with a series of Blurb produced "Black" books. The project "Other People's Photographs" came about by trolling the internet for material on image sharing sites like Flickr and using keywords to find patterns of photographic behavior "focusing on the repetition of word, rather than the repetition of image. These are books about photography but from a more “light-hearted” perspective."

The first in this "Black Book" series is called When Boredom Strikes and it holds 156 photos and captions made when the "photographer" was bored. Boredom causes people to point the camera where ever and however the impulse directs - at shoes, at pets, at the ceiling, at the fabric patters of their pants. In some ways these pictures are experiments on the part of the taker and in other ways they are disposable images made just to fill time. Often full of humor and "light-hearted" as Schmid describes but, as a whole, the book is loaded with sadness. The subtext of the amount of boredom at work, at play, in everyday life can't be ignored. One image even is of a man's penis while he is masturbating. We have become a society that is even bored while masturbating.

On a positive level one could say that when we are bored is when we actually start to really examine our environments. This book proves that we are at least inquisitive to "see" through photography what those surroundings look like in photos but I doubt that most of these images would be considered a second time by the taker at later dates. Whether or not this is true, they are here for us to consider.

When Boredom Strikes is the size of a hardcover novel, vertical in format and printed in text quality black and white. By reducing all of the images to black and white, Schmid levels the field of good to bad photos. The captions reveal various attitudes and oddly, many seem to be apologetic in referring to their "creations" made while boredom struck. In combination with these apologies and the fact that these were posted to image sharing websites is a curious means of admittance.

Behavior and photography is endlessly fascinating now that everything has a camera attached to it. The images may not be often worthy of serious consideration for many viewers (although Schmid would argue the exact opposite I am sure) but when collected and presented as a common impulse, we see where we connect and what that connection says about us. It is a group portrait of sorts, for better or for worse.

Note: For other series, check out Schmid's "White" books and the limited "Grey" versions as well.
http://schmid.wordpress.com/

64 comments:

Non-Germans said...

The Germans are coming! The Germans are coming! Are they the only ones putting out books or what?

Anonymous said...

Boredom has struck.

Anonymous said...

it is true, boredom makes you examine the environment. maybe all photographers are full of boredom, especially the ones living in germany. richter, bechers, other düsseldorf dudes, schmidt etc. perhaps we're even boring and have forgot that actual life is much more interesting than photographs of it. boredom makes you also examine the inner life but i guess nowadays its not cool to make books about that. too messy and difficult i guess.
interesting review, although a bit boring. looking forward of getting Toshi-e.

Samthase said...

You write: "By reducing all of the images to black and white, Schmid levels the field of good to bad photos"

What? That's an insane assertion along the lines of "By eliminating all punctuation X levels the field of good and bad writing".

Jeff Ladd said...

Samthase,

I don't think it is similar at all to "By eliminating all punctuation levels the field of good and bad writin."

There are seductive elements to photographs, such as color, that are perceived even before a photo is "read" or understood. You have to engage in writing in a far more intense level to get anything out of it. I am talking of the surface, those initial impressions that happen in the first few seconds of view.

What I was saying, perhaps not clearly enough for you, is by removing the color, it reduces this possibility of mistaking a photo as something really engaging simply because of a nice color.

For instance, look at many of Joachim Schmid's other books which DO reproduce the work in full color and you may find that they seem more interesting - yet they are the same types of photos.

Is that really an insane assertion?

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the black and white elements should also be removed from the photograph, thus levelling the field still further.

Mr. Whiskets said...

I quess he could, but that would be a Robert Ryman book.

Doktor said...

the photos in the book look aesthetically pleasing and interesting -seemingly better then other works by the photographer, if you can call him that.

I'm not sure what to make of your critic or "meditation" to the book though to be honest.

"Collecting" and "boredom" are great subjects and connected to the creativ process since mankind decided it might be a good idea to stand on two feet and think about things.

The first thing to say about a project like this will be some kind of critical statement about our "modern society" "mass consumption" etc. Since 20 years I am trying to find out why people working and writing on photography still fall into this trap. Guilty? Are we? of what? I don't think its photography strength to answer this questions.

It goes on till " I doubt that most of these images would be considered a second time by the taker at later dates" Another prejudices which I find a bit arrogant and also untrue in my experience as a photographer and with "Nonprofessional" image takers.

My critique may sound a bit harsh and moody too but its only because I am used to better insight by you!

cheers!

Jeff Ladd said...

Thanks Dok.

Yes my critique may sound arrogant but I hold any photo to the same standards whether it be amateur or "professional."

To my prejudice, in my experience, when prints were made, for instance, for family albums, those would be viewed but a few times within a lifetime. I frankly can't remember the last time I broke out my own family's album or looked over the thousands of everyday snaps I have made. Now that these images exist digitally and are easier to make, are we really accessing them any more often. i would guess not, actually the opposite. My impression is that photographs have become increasingly disposable and with more being made by each individual, they are forgotten just as fast. I am certainly not calling for them to not exist, i am just asking about how they exist in the world.

The photography, or the aims of the taker, are not to answer my questions (there is no means to an end but following an impulse to record either due to boredom or fascination) but my reaction to their being presented and what that, as a completely new "end" might represent. this is what this book brings to my mind.

BryanF said...

So, I'm curious, can he just lift any photograph from Flickr he wants? It's not all amateurs, there are working pros and ambitious fine art/photography photographers who post on Flickr.

Brent Woo said...

Its not just Flickr he "Lifts" photographs from, apparently. The dude is a thief, pure and simple. He needs to be hung by his thumbs in a public square in very good lighting so that every photographer he has stolen from can come and get pictures taken of his agony.

That and all the money he has made from his books should be taken from him and divided between the actual photographers he has stolen from.

alohadave said...

He is a thief who claims that people who post their pictures online are producing pictures that aren't original enough to qualify for copyright, yet he claims copyright on his compilations of stolen work.

Anonymous said...

it is interesting if people will consider this stolen work "cool" and intellectual especially when their reaction to richard princes stolen work was and is so absolutely negative, or perhaps this stolen work is more intellectual as the thief has a german name. or perhaps it is ok to steel when put under the right context, like in klaus staecks work. you be the judge, mr. whiskets apparently is not

Anonymous said...

Schmid is a good artist who has been making interesting work with found photos since the mid '80s. One of his interests is what can be learned about our accepted beliefs around photography when these everyday images are gathered together. I haven't seen any evidence to the effect that "dude is a thief" (thanks for the laugh on that one) & quite possibly he does ask permission first, easy enough to do on flickr & many people would say yes, I'm sure. But it's ripe material for the Internet lynch squads who never let the facts get in the way of their rage.

Ralph said...

This is nothing but thievery. Call it whatever you want, he steals photos and uses them for personal, financial gain. There is nothing artistic about this "project". What we have here is a guy without an ounce of talent nor a shred of integrity. When he "found photos on the street" he may have had something, but what he does now by taking copyrighted material from non-anonymous people is theft, plain and simple. He has the nerve to steal copyrighted material, and say question the copyright, and then turn around, and claim copyright in his own name for work he stole. This is in no way different from a guy taking your car from your own garage and then registering it under his own name and claiming its his. Utterly disgusting.

Anonymous said...

Don't bother with a trial, just string him up boys. Yeehah! The lynch mob is in town.

jeff ladd (answering for whiskets) said...

Anon August 31, 2009 9:22 PM,

I don't understand most of your point. My reaction to Richard Prince is negative? When have I mentioned Richard Prince? I am all for appropriation if its interesting and produces thought which the original work does not on its own. Sherrie Lavine has made some interesting work questioning context and authorship.

And by the way it is "steal" not "steel." Although using "steel" in the context of Staeck IS correct.

Anonymous said...

Hey Jeff, have you thought about setting up one of those Amazon partner links, whatever they're called, where you get a kickback if we buy stuff from them via your link? I buy a few books from there & I'm sure other readers of your site do also. A few of the photo/blog sites have them but I'm not as fond of those people as I am of you. If you do sign up & put a link I'll buy all my Amazon stuff via you.
Michael W

jeff ladd said...

Michael,

I do have links to amazon which are the books to the right hand side. if you enter amazon through one of my links, whatever you wind up getting throws me a little kickback.

Thanks for the show of support

Anonymous said...

That's good to know. It is a little obscure however & I wonder how many others were like me & don't know how those links work. I reckon you should put a more obvious link to Amazon that makes clear it's the associate program or whatever they call it.

One Way Street said...

The fury of some of the responses to Schmid's books, calling him a "thief" seems a bit muddled. Schmid's position is that of an archivist & collector of commonplace images. Would we call all archives & collectors thieves as well? Schmid is working with material which is available to anyone - if someone were to look for it. I think of the now burgeoning interest in vernacular photography, the many collections which have been published as "So-&-So's" collection or the collection of the "Museum of Blah-Blah" - would that not be thievery by the same logic?

My sense is that some of the knee-jerk reactions are mostly a kind of defensive immaturity - one would hope this is also a symptom of a power to the very humble, prosaic snapshot & photographic practices, just as it seems to lose all meaning in its proliferation.

b said...

mostly a kind of defensive immaturity
Maybe you need a little defensive immaturity sometimes to weed out thieving crap? (Not saying this is crap yet, but it might be, (probably) but don't know the 'artist' or work well enough to say.

Schmid is working with material which is available to anyone - if someone were to look for it.
Uh, yeah, but people do look for it everyday, it's just that not everyone that looks for it decides to take it and reproduce it under their name and terms. I understand the collection, curating of found photographs argument but seriously this is borderline (at best.) This is definitely a few steps removed from what Richard Prince did — you might argue that's progress but it's progress in the wrong direction I think. Artists, professional or not who post their work online should not have to worry about people thieving their work and thinking it's ok because it was found on the internet. We need better than that.

One Way Street said...

To follow up on the follow up to my earlier comments, I will point out what I think is perhaps the most interesting aspect to it, which is the perimeters of what is considered hands-on or hands-off on the internet. Basically anything on line can be appropriated somehow. Who doesn't have their own picture files of stuff taken from on line? It's kind of fabulous to have all this at one's fingertips, & it also negates a sense of private property. The only true way to keep things off-limits on line is to not have them on line at all.

Also I would point out that conflating Joachim Schmid w/ Richard Prince is a pointless enterprise. By the tone I guess Richard Prince is supposed to represent artistic bankruptcy by denigrating such inviolate images as Marlboro ad campaigns w/ his appropriation of them. Is there no meaning in tearing these images from their original contexts to illuminate cultural ideas about virility, masculinity, & manifest destiny which seem exposed & abject, when they no longer glorify cigarettes? Isn't that a good thing? What's so special & glorious about advertising? Why should any of us feel compelled to respect the autonomy of advertising?

Joachim Schmid's work addresses the excess of images, now put on the web. Are we to assume that what's posted on the web is private? How so? Look but don't touch? Isn't the internet about communication & sharing? Distinctions of what, for want of better term, constitute private property, become a moot point if posted on line.

I Love Richard Prince Susan Sontag Sherrie Levine Nan Goldin said...

"By the tone I guess Richard Prince is supposed to represent artistic bankruptcy"
@ One Way Street, you are correct. There is a cohort out there who believe exactly that. All you have to do is mention the name Richard Prince to drive them into a frenzy of loathing. Other names that press their buttons are Nan Goldin, Sherrie Levine & Susan Sontag. I suppose they have certain inflexible beliefs that are threatened by the production of these people. I doubt whether they'd heard of Schmid until recently but no doubt the word spreads fast on the 'net & hence the ocasion of several cropping up here to denounce him.
But richard Prince is the devil incarnate.

Anonymous said...

The only true way to keep things off-limits on line is to not have them on line at all.
But you could have said this about books 1-2 hundred years ago. Should you tell copyright owners who have work published in books that, that work is fair game because they put it out there? Don't be ridiculous.

And Richard Prince is the devil incarnate? Well I guess to some? No need to get dramatic about it.

My problem here is that anytime someone violates copyright laws now (this or Obama poster boy Fairey for example) they start spouting out about "why is it ok if Prince did it but not me." Just because there's a history or taking in art doesn't mean some guy should come along and steal photos from flickr etc. If you can't see the conceptual difference between what artists like Prince/Warhol/ Lichtenstein did and artists who assume the internet is a free clip art library you really need to stop and think a little harder.

Dude is an artist said...

I'm hearing a lot of huffing & puffing and use of the word 'stealing' but I'm yet to read of a direct complaint against Schmid from anyone who's photo has been used. Are you so sure he didn't get their permission first?

Anonymous said...

Well then go ahead and ask him Dude. I guess that would make it ...acceptable, at least on a legal basis.

If not I guess as long as the copyright holders don't find out then it's all fair game? Is there a time limit on how long you have to file complaint?

mr whiskets said...

Would those same proponents of rigorous copyright be upset if their work was chosen without permission for a catalog or an exhibition at MoMA, or in a book by Hans-Peter Feldmann. Schmid and others who do make this kind of "curatorial" art are changing the work even if it isn't altering images. The entire group of photos IS the artwork, not the individual photos so I would believe even if there were a copyright issue it would be covered under fair use.

As for the idea that Schmid is cashing in on others by selling these books, that is a joke that made me laugh out loud.

Anonymous said...

mr whiskets: By your logic, any entrepreneurial minded curator could lift any work they find online (Alec Soth, Stephen Shore, Simon Roberts, etc., etc.) And put together any anthology and call it transformative. What about the written word? Could I include blog posts by prominent photography writers online?

Perhaps Shmid isn't making money on the books. But what if he did stumble upon a hit and generated some income?

It's really a moot point because not respectable publishing house would go near this because they clearly understand it's illegal. This is why he's using Blurb.

The stupidity of this statement made me laugh out loud..

"The entire group of photos IS the artwork, not the individual photos so I would believe even if there were a copyright issue it would be covered under fair use."

Mr. Whiskets said...

No actually that is not my logic. "Lifting" known entities which are clearly covered by copyright like the people you mention is very different like it or not. Those works have been officially registered for their copyright. I think you are confusing the idea that everything is automatically covered when it is not. There are criteria for such copyright benefits.

For all I know of the terms and conditions, Blogger might own everything I have posted and I have no copyright registered for my thoughts written here so steal away. You could do an anonymous 5B4 book of essays. I'd be flattered.

Respectable publishing houses like Walther Konig for Hans-Peter Feldmann DO publish books similar to this all the time.

What about "FOUND" magazine republishing personal letters and photos they "find" in the street? That is far more of an invasion of privacy and they sell too.

I hope he makes a lot of money because he creates unique archives that are thought provoking.

Anonymous said...

Um, perhaps you should review some of the Copyright myths.

You don't need to register the work.

"Copyright protection requires registering your work with the Copyright Office in Washington, D.C.

b. Not true. I created it, it's mine, and there's nothing more I have to do.

The answer is b. Again, copyright protection attaches immediately. If you need more proof, look at that sketch you made and remember that it has copyright protection already. All that is required is an original work of authorship-be it literary, artistic, musical, or even a computer program-affixed in any tangible medium of expression. 17 USC §102(a)."

http://www.artlawteam.com/2009/08/articles/copyright-2/copyright-myths-debunked/

Photographs and letters found on the street can be used because they are considered discarded by the owners.

Mr. Whiskets said...

Then by that description, Schmid's books are "original" works in that they are creating an archive (which is the work of art) that has not been created before.

Anonymous said...

So, if I'm understand you correctly, any anthology of photographs is a new work, and thus copyright doesn't apply?


So by that logic, one could use any copyrighted photographs, mix them up anyway one wants, and presto, original work that you can sell. So why not mix up Atget, Shore, Sugimoto, Eggleston in clever ways? Perhaps one could deem all this work to be cliche and unoriginal on it's own.

Anonymous said...

^ Not a great argument there. Talk to ARS and see what they tell you.


He's right, you don't need to register your work. Everything you do is yours. Registration just makes it easier to file suit and prove it.

Would those same proponents of rigorous copyright be upset if their work was chosen without permission for a catalog or an exhibition at MoMA
Really that shouldn't matter. It's great that you don't care if anyone reproduces your blog, but what if you did care? You really don't seem to be looking at this from all angles. Fortunately the photographer that Shepard Fairey stole from is an Obama sympathizer so that helps. But what if he was a staunch republican on assignment?


As for the idea that Schmid is cashing in on others by selling these books, that is a joke that made me laugh out loud.
After you finish laughing, maybe you can think about what he is gaining from it...


I think the idea and concept is interesting on a certain level but we're definitely on shaky ground here and it's worth discussing. I'm surprised at how aggressive and emotional you've gotten about this whiskers.

Mr. Whiskets said...

If you're reading aggression and emotion into my putting an opinion out there you are wrong. Was it my use of caps to emphasize certain words that made that seem emotional? Seriously, I am asking because I am sitting here looking at proofs of my books and just thinking about this dialogue. Not emotional but thinking.

The Shepard Fairey issue is he has substantially changed the image. What is the sticking piint with most of the argument here is that Schmid isn't altering the photos but their relation to one another.

Anonymous said...

The Shepard Fairey is issue is whether or not he has altered a copyrighted image that he took from the internet. I have my opinion but as far as I know it has yet to be legally decided, but it's the same issue as here. Especially if you're trying to argue Schmids photos are 'different' because it's an archive.

This issue seems to be representative of the mindset of youth today who think everything online is free for the taking, whether it's mp3s, movies, video games, or clip art and photos. I don't think it's an issue that should be simply passed over under the excuse of it's 'art.' Think we really need to question how ethical this is, what is going on here and across the spectrum.

leggle said...

Hey Anonymous who's been ranting on here the last few posts - I put my question again - Do you know for sure that Schmid did not ask permission to use these photos from the people who put them on flickr?

Anonymous said...

I guess I'll have to repeat myself as well, if you care so much...

Well then go ahead and ask him Dude. I guess that would make it ...acceptable, at least on a legal basis. But it still wouldn't address the larger topic at hand here.

thechrisproject said...

Leggle,
I just got the book and located two photographers whose photos had been used. I emailed them. One has replied so far and he was unaware of the use and unhappy with it. So does that change the discussion?

coshmi said...

One has replied so far and he was unaware of the use and unhappy with it. So does that change the discussion?
@ the chrisproject

Not really, it does mean that someone has finally bothered to find out some facts rather than just blowing hot air, so bravo for that. I also know there was/is some creative commons thing on flickr that allowed for people to make some use of uploaded photos, so that would have to be looked at. It's not enough that the guy whose photo was used is unhappy about it.

surstri said...

I guess I'll have to repeat myself as well, if you care so much...

Well then go ahead and ask him Dude. I guess that would make it ...acceptable, at least on a legal basis. But it still wouldn't address the larger topic at hand here.

@ ranting Anonymous

I'm not the one who cares, so it's no difference to me whether he did or not. However I am seeing a bunch of people huffing & puffing about how wicked Schmid is for using these photos, based on the assumption that he is using them without permission or any right to do so. I smell an Internet witch hunt where people read something & believe it without checking properly, like the absurd urban myth that Leibovitz is in financial distress as a result of inheriting property from Susan Sontag (she didn't). Credit to the chrisproject for bothering to actually ask some people directly, he's probably the first one to do so.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you mention that this Schmid is stealing these photos from photo websites. They're not his own, he's a thief, and trying to profit off the works of others.

Anonymous said...

@ ranting Anonymous
Rolling eyes, please grow up

...he was unaware of the use
Shocker

Q: So does that change the discussion?

A: Not really

LOL, sure ok.

I'm not on a witch hunt about Schmid. And even if this flickr user was happy about it or even asked permission it would make it ok legally but still leaves a big ethical question about using found photos on the internet.

What I've been ranting about (if that's what you want to try and call it) is the ethics of presenting "art" that's not yours, of using the web as a clip art library for artists too lazy to be creative. It's highly disappointing that this attitude is becoming so pervasive in our youth and culture. It's not just Schmid, it's happening all over the place and it's part of why so much work is becoming so conceptually flat.

Anonymous said...

Is it a "youth" thing you old coot?

Schmid is in his late 40s and if you had any background in art history you could point to Marcel Duchamp, Han-Peter Feldmann, Richard Prince, John Hartfield, Hannah Hoch...should I go on?

Get off my lawn you dopey lazy young art bitches!!

Anonymous said...

I hate to keep repeating myself, but I know there are a lot of comments that you may have missed or been too lazy to read so here ya go:

My problem here is that anytime someone violates copyright laws ... they start spouting "but Prince did it!" Just because there's a history or taking in art doesn't authorize some guy to steal photos from flickr. If you can't see the conceptual difference between what artists like Prince/Warhol/ Lichtenstein did and artists who assume the internet is a free clip art library you really need to stop and think a little harder.

Anonymous said...

Repeating yourself is one sign of old age...

Schmid is an artist working partly in the conceptual realm. It really is no different than Duchamp appropriating a wine bottle drying rack and claiming it as a "ready-made." Or because he signed the urinal R. Mutt does that relieve him (no pun intended) of his responsibility to the makers?

You are the one who needs to exercise his mind a bit. Or are you too lazy to see beyond your own contempt?

Oops..gotta go. My limewire just finished downloading shit loads of new music.

Anonymous said...

Repeating yourself is one sign of old age...
And not listening or thinking is a sign of etc... Do we really need to go on on with this stupid bickering back and forth?

A discourse on a significant issue and the response from you is a moronic parade of insults and nonsense to those whom you don't agree?


I do think the idea of mining the internet to explore the worlds collective unconscious (or boredom) is an interesting concept. But this is no urinal and he's no r mutt. And I'm certainly not alone in thinking this has crossed the line here.

Anonymous said...

Listen Grandpa you're the one who started with the moronic drops of "age-ism" so I'm just setting some back into your Depends-wearin' lap. You think a line has been crossed? So gather together your AARP mall-walkers and go after him.

Ok, you don't like Schmid the same way people freaked out over Duchamp and thought he was crap. If I might be so bold as to make an assumption about you based on the tone of your comments, this has only become a copyright issue because you don't like his work. If someone you liked were to do the same exact thing I am fairly certain your "crossed line" would move a bit forward.

But then again, I'm a moron. A moron who can read you as easily as a book of bored photos.

Tad Fancy - lesser known '70s action sitcom actor said...

Yeah, Gramps!
Light another patchouli stick, put on some Canned Heat and go back to freakin' out with yer Jerry Uelsmann monographs! The youth of today are skateboardin' through your herb garden and they got iPods on and can't even hear you anyway!!

Anonymous said...

Just reread your last post, if not moronic it's rather petty and childish.

I lamented that youth today see the internet as a free source for everything. Maybe that's too sweeping of a statement... but I had nothing to do with devolving the argument into a bunch of sad one liners about old-coots and Depends. It's you who are trying to devolve the issue with absurdity and red herring tactics.

And I can assure you this has nothing to do with my like or dislike of Schmid, I know nothing about him. My concern is the overarching theme of what's going on here. And yes, I am equally critical of artists I like, possibly more so as I expect so much of them. And I'm decades from retirement, quite possibly younger than you, so you might want to go back to school to brush up on your skill at "reading people like books."

Anonymous said...

And I didn't understand a word you said Tad :/

sebastian said...

do go on, i'm copying everything -
romeo (anonymous) & juliet (anonymous), harmless, but in a dramatic scene of epic proportions - also hints of a larger question at stake, yet to be developed - my internet novella taking shape quickly - the choir of faceless people always knows more than the yet to go blind king - oedipus the odious - yeah and sorry i'm german too. // thanks for your texts as always jeff, and thanks for your books J.S.

octocons said...

Richard Prince once wrote something along the lines of .... there are some things that can only be said by using someone else's work...
Sums it up right there, sometimes a man artist's gotta do what a man artist's gotta do.

Anonymous said...

Sebastion, marvelous post, brilliant, just bloody brilliant, can't wait!

Anonymous said...

In a post-modern artistic intervention I have expressed artistically the artistic art of art by curating Joachim's books into a new tome. I call it 'Stealing from a Thief'.

This Schmidt is a plain thief, there is no art about what he does. Trial yes, burn after :P

honess said...

"In a post-modern artistic intervention I have expressed artistically the artistic art of art by curating Joachim's books into a new tome. I call it 'Stealing from a Thief'."

So what? You think that is some biting satire? There's always someone who has no idea about post modernism and will make some silly comment about appropriation that misses the point.

Jan V said...

Feel free to copy this comment. I won't mind...

Nom de Guerre said...

honess said: "appropriation that misses the point." I couldn't have said it better!

One needs only look at Ruff's Jpegs to see appropriation of the same type of material that is actually interesting and beautiful in its new context. This, this is just weak and uninspired.

knesses said...

Nom de Guerre said...
This, this is just weak and uninspired.

You were referring to your post?

Nom de Guerre said...

Ha ha! Touché

But seriously, this is appropriation that misses the point. You can say I don't get post modernism but that's obviously not true. I just don't like conceptually weak work. That's all.

ulpidom said...

I dig it, man.

Russ said...

I thought Sebastian had it but knesses pipped him at the line.

Anonymous said...

Message to Ralph Sept 1st 2009.
In my opinion you are completely wrong. How can you call his work theft? Worse, comparing it to someone stealing a car from your garage? Schmid has merely used discarded images (found images). I don't know if you have noticed but most of them have been ripped into small pieces, before being thrown out, abandoned or thrown into a fire. Being a photographer myself I should probably share your ignorant opinion but as I'm sure you are well aware by now, I don't! If I was to simply tear one of my images up and throw it away or loose it in a public place, I would then be fully to blame for its absense. If your comparison of 'taking someone's car from their own garage' theory were correct then you could say the same about lost property. If you leave an item of clothing in a public place (known or unbeknown to you) you can't expect the company to keep hold of it forever more. Schmid is simply using material that people have thrown away or lost, and you can argue that If he didn't pick them up or buy them from flea markets, they would just dissapear altogether, which in my opinion seems much worse than sharing these great snippets of anonymous people's lives. Look up foundmagazine.com, the clue is in the word 'found'! There are many people out there such as Sherrie Levine, Cindy Sherman and even people who have no connections with art what so ever. Clearly you know very little about the real context of his work. Try thinking outside the box! Schmid is not a crook and he certainly isn't mugging anyone off or violating ANY copyright laws!

Anonymous said...

With direct reference to 'when boredom strikes', if you read the small print on all of them, anyone has the right to use any of the images. Also, if they state other wise, by law you can still take what you like.