The “I Was Here” Movement

Tags: , , , , ,

During a 2016 trip to Iceland, I found myself photographing and studying my fellow visitors instead of the landscapes. Tourists from China, Germany, Israel and the United States took turns striking classic selfie poses in front of rocks, a waterfall or single-engine airplanes. No
one spoke during this repetitive shuffle, not even to ask, “Can you please step out of my photo?” Each and every person took the very same “I was here” photo before moving on to make room for the next visitor. Not one of them looked up to feel and smell the rain or paused to listen for the elves famously rumored to hide in the rocks.

The images that make up this series are partially distorted by a filmy layer, a photo of the respective printed image placed on top of each original digital image. This layer creates distance from the reality of these scenes as a metaphor for our distorted modern perspective as we view printed and digital images, experiencing our lives through the narrow lens of cameras and phones.

Images by Chimera Singer.

xx Chimera Singer

This article was originally published in RANGE Magazine Issue Nine.