I just got back from a week in New York City, reporting a handful of stories for Dwell (we're featuring many amazing projects in 2011... stay tuned!). I'll be posting a slideshow of my adventures soon, but in the meantime, here's one of my favorite finds from the trip: the Lomography Gallery Store, located in Chelsea at 41 West 8th Street.
I was lured in off the street by the bright and colorful photos, plastered floor-to-ceiling in a pixelated pattern. I didn't have much time to browse—I had to run off for a coffee date with Marc Kristal, our New York contributing editor—but I did snap a few photos of what I later learned is a 'LomoWall,' which according to the Vienna-based company's website is "part exhibition, part experience... created from a flood of authentic, colourful and awe-inspiring analog snapshots, also known as Lomographs."
According to the shopkeeper, each Lomography shop around the world has a different LomoWall, made up entirely of photos taken in that city. Local 'lomographers'—that's what they cultishly call photographers who shoot images using Lomography cameras, some of which have cool fisheye and multiple lenses—scan their photos and upload them to the company's website. Then someone in Vienna arranges the images into crazy, mesmerizing patterns and mounts them onto mylar panels, which are then attached to the shop's walls. The New York shop opened in late 2008, and has 3,300 images on the walls.
The shop also holds quirky workshops, including double-decker bus tours where you can borrow a camera and shoot the city as you cruise past, and free classes on everything from making photo transfers to using Lomography's latest camera, the Spinner 360, which true to its name spins around while capturing 360-degree views. Next visit, I may buy one of their frankensteinian cameras.