Certainly there are some people among us who deal with the topic of their family archives and who also reflect on different photographic aspects. In this type of work, we sometimes ask ourselves various questions – those that are directly related to the taking care of archival materials, but also these ones that deal with the symbolism of family history represented in the photographs. In cooperation with Picture Doc Foundation, we have published some answers for you. Check out the instructions and articles on the website of Pracownia Duży Pokój. Let’s use this time that we spent at home to cultivate our family memory.
Family archives are a very common but at the same time a unique topic. We all possess photo albums in our souvenirs, viewing of which is something quite ordinary, however their special nature, which is on the border of many aspects, both theoretical and practical ones, captures the attention of representatives of various fields. Family photography is thus a topic for amateurs and for specialists, generally speaking – for everyone.
The common point connecting the diversity of family archives belongs to the issue of memory. Family photographs without the memory of family members do not perform their main function. We are the memory – we pass our history to the next generations, thereby pointing out what is important for the contemporary ones. While sharing our memories, not only in the family, but also with other people, we exchange our experiences relating to a sense of identity, which constitute the meaning of who we are now.
The topic of family archives is crucial especially in the context of contemporary changes. We are at a special moment in history when not only the materiality of family photographs is transforming from analog to digital one, but also because of different ways of treating this type of material in virtual space. Therefore, all activities related to family archives are not only an individual issue of souvenirs owners, but also a general testimony of contemporary reality.