I’m really not
sure how common knowledge of Found is. I've seen it in many places but few people I know have heard of it from
anywhere but my own self. I just
yesterday bought a Found compilation, a “best-of” in art-book type format at Urban
Outfitters (that place is like a bookstore now), so I think that a lot more
people are going to be in the know. That’s
not a bad thing, but it’s always a bit sad when something you thought was
special just for you turns out to be special for a whole lot of people. In any case, the idea behind the magazine is
this: people from all over the world basically just send in stuff they found –
not mattresses or cats but photos, notes, letters, and such, and a couple guys
in a basement Xerox them and cut and paste them into a more easily perusable
form. I first encountered it at issue #4
(they are released twice yearly, maybe?) and now there must be eight or
more. I can't reproduce much here
but you can go to Foundmagazine.com and they have plenty for you, and maybe
even some back issues for oder, though most are out of print I believe.
There is a huge variety of things to be found – one page may be all notes left on cars which have been parked badly, another all stickies left on cabinets after one night stands. There are letters to lovers in prison and estranged parents, grocery lists and crack budgets, valentines and hateful diatribes. Some are bigger than others: I recall one find where a guy was renovating his apartment and found a box in a secret wall compartment, stuffed to the brim with letters. They were from a girlfriend, and the lovers’ mutual travels had separated them but they kept in touch. Over the letters their whole relationship unfolded: the easy, optimistic beginning, the distance building, the frustration at separation, the eventual revelations of infidelity (on his part), but the letters don’t stop – they seem to have been written almost every day (or more) for years. Tracking the trajectory of the relationship (unfortunately only a small excerpt was provided) was interesting and saddening, but the worst part was that the guy’s letter writing slows and stops to his girlfriend’s dismay, and after a time her letters to him remain unopened. There are a bunch of sealed envelopes in the box and I don’t think the finder had the heart to open them up.
In any case, that’s the kind of thing you can expect in these pages – though certainly not all the finds are tragic records of a doomed romance. It’s fascinating and rather addictive, like sour cream & onion lays, you can always go for one more. Images courtesy of foundmagazine.com, hope they don't mind.