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I am photographing a collection of suitcases left behind by residents of the Willard Psychiatric Center in Willard, NY
674 backers pledged $18,114 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates

7 February, 2014 / rewards


Thanks to all of you have helped out with the new appeal.

After the first appeal closed, I worked really hard at making sure everyone got their rewards, and I did really well, but several seemed to have slipped through the cracks.  Some came back to me with incorrect addresses, and a few seemed to get lost in the post.  I just heard from backer Lisa B that she didn't get hers, and I just put it in an envelope and am about to mail it.  So if you never got your reward, send me a message through Kickstarter and I will make sure you get it.  It is very important to me that this gets sorted.  All best, and thanks again.  jon

5 February, 2014


Hello Old Friends,

I have just put up the second appeal to fund my work on the suitcases project.  Check it out here.   I am raising more funds in order to photograph the entire collection, including all the empty cases.  After the first round was successful, due largely to your support, I decided to continue with the project.  I have been shooting again since early last summer, and hope to finish by the end of 2014.  I would really appreciate it if you could help out again.  Thanks for your consideration and all the best.


10 July, 2013

Hi Backers,

I am back to shooting the cases.  Here is a link to my wordpress site where I have just posted photographs of Irma M's belongings.  I am so excited to be with the suitcases again.  It is such a unique and amazing collection.

I am still working on the site and really hope to be done soon and there are other developments that I hope to speak about in the coming weeks.

All best for a great summer and thanks.


2 May, 2013

Hey Kickstarter backers.  I've been thinking of you.  There is a lot happening with the project, and I thought it was time for a quick update.  "The Changing Face of What is Normal" has just opened at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, and many of my photographs are used.  Here is a link to my wordpress post about it.

I can't remember if I mentioned the piece that was done in Slate, but here it is.

That story led to an invitation to be on NPR's Talk of the Nation.  Here is a link to the interview.  What fun!

I am still moving forward.  I hope to have up and running in the next few weeks, and I am planning to print a series of postcards to help me continue to raise funds to resume photography of the suitcases.

I couldn't have done it without your support.  Thanks and all the best.


1 March, 2013

Here's something interesting.  Ari Shapiro from Talk of the Nation on NPR saw the Slate story and became interested in the project.  So it looks like I will be on the program talking about the suitcases on Monday, 4 March from 3.40 - 4.00 pm Eastern time.  As they always say, "check your local listings".  Very exciting.

I FedExed the final prints to the Exploratorium yesterday.  It is a great relief to have them on their way, and now I can't wait to see them in place.

One more huge thank you to all my backers.  You really made this project possible and I am so grateful.