Hi my name is André Hermann. I am a visual storyteller,
educator, and avid iPhone shooter. One day, as I was experimenting with
printing my iPhone images using an historic photo process, an interesting
question surfaced. We have become so rooted in a digital way of life, what
happens to all of these images that we are creating with our camera phones? Do
they get stored on hard drives, or, dumped and lost in online photo sharing
site feeds never to be born into a physical form?
has our experience with photography become as a culture? Has the art of
photography been boiled down to the act of sitting at a computer, or phone in
hand, editing, the intimacy of sharing an image lost to a click of a send
button, our emotional reactions to those images substituted for the clicking of
a like button? A photograph is physical. It is the very thing that makes
photography, well, photography. So what has photography become? What does it
continue to be?
with this idea and inspiration, I set out to design a series of limited edition
photo books featuring my iPhone street photography, hiding them in random
locations throughout the city of San Francisco, California for people to find.
project originally started as an experiment. My intention was to challenge people’s
perception of what photography was, what it has become, and how one would
engage photography, and their physical environment. Would people be interested
in engaging a foreign or possibly familiar environment to find a free photo
book? Was there still value in the tangible as it related to the art of
photography? By challenging everyone to go out and find these books my
intention was to include everyone in the book making process. I would be
helping everyone to create a personal interaction with the book in a way that
would create a memory of an experience that is far beyond the experience of
purchasing a book online, in a bookstore, or interacting with one on a tablet.
Everyone loves a treasure hunt and the thrill of finding and exploring new places,
sights and experiences. Once I engaged people, and they were successful, they
now had a numbered book that no one else would own, containing a memory of an
experience unique to each person.
unique series of 20 books were hidden and found on the streets of San Francisco
and New York City. After much success, and positive press on this hidden book
project, and after receiving a multitude of requests to hide books in other
states, I have decided to take this project on the road, and share this unique experience
with as many people as I can across the US. This is where I need your help.
goal is to travel across the U.S. hiding 15 different limited series photo book
collections in 15 different cities. I could easily choose the cities myself but
what fun would that be? How am I going to choose the cities? I’m not. You are. With a minimum
donation of $5 you will be rewarded 1 “pin” to place on the map. The more you
donate the more pins you get to place on the map, of course, there are also
some really amazing awards available at each donation level. At the end of the
30 days the cities with the most pins will have a place on the route, and a
series of photo books hidden in that city.
photo books will continue to be custom made, signed and numbered. Each city
will have its own unique series. Similar to the San Francisco book series I
plan to challenge people’s perception of printed photography and the value we
place on the photo books, our experiences, memories, and how we engage our
environment when faced with a challenge to find something hidden. So please
help make this campaign successful. Get everyone you know together who you
think may need some excitement in their life to donate and help bring a series
of books to your town or city. Believe me, you’ll never have an experience like
this going to a physical or online bookstore. So help fund it so I can hide it
and you can seek it.
If you're curious to know more about this project please click through the following links. The story was featured on the NY Times Lens Blog, APM's nationally broadcasted radio program "The Story" and Travel & Leisure Magazine's travel-blog.