When I was younger, I would frequent the local Photo Booths to take self-portraits. Throughout high school and my studies at university I would seek out these rare photo booths. Sometimes just for a self-portrait sometimes a portrait with a friend and one time, I took a portrait with a complete stranger.
Over the years photo booths have become more scarce. Sure there are many digital photo booths but not many old school photo booths that use real chemicals and the film development process.
In the late 2000’s Facebook was introduced and everyone seemed to own smart phones with a digital camera. I witnessed people uploading their digital photos to social networking sites and they had the ability to delete the photos right away or alter them to make them look old.
This got me thinking. I missed the old school photo booth portrait. The commitment to the object. If one is unhappy with the strip of 4-photos they must destroy an actual object. It's not just the deletion of pixels. I miss the captured moment in time. I miss the intimate time spent with someone in the close quarters of the booth. I miss the moment of conversation and the unique experience.
In early 2012 I decided to start taking photo booth portraits with all my friends, for my archive, for art, for Facebook. That led to everyone I'm connected with on Facebook. I admit, I am 'friends' with people on Facebook that I've never met in person. It's an art thing. It's a New York City thing.
That was a starting point. As I began to reach out to people I normally would not have met, I realized I wanted to take this project further. I want to take a photo booth portrait with everyone. With every person I know and every person I don't know.
A lot of my art works are time based. And this one is no exception. At first I thought this would be a life-long project. Then I realized I didn't even want to put that limit on it. So, this project will go on forever. How? Well, there are other people named “David Harth.” And after I die, another person named “David Harth” can continue this project. As long as a “David Harth” poses in the photo booth portrait the project can continue forever.
This photo booth portrait project finally got a name “Every Person I know and Every Person I Don’t Know” and I realized another component to the project, The Editions. If you pose with me, you have the option to get an exclusive art work edition.
That’s how this project came about. I hope perhaps you'll be up for taking a photo booth portrait with me? Contact Me.
The end result of this project is this website. Granted, there is no ending. I’ll be also posting photos on Facebook. At this time I have no further plans for this project other than its virtual presence and the actual photos that reside in my archive and the editions.
David Greg Harth (People call me Harth )