The profession of the photographer has changed dramatically with the rise of digital photography and especially with smartphone cameras documenting our everyday life snap by snap. The ability of creating images has become somehow secondary. Nowadays outstanding photographers are rather conceptual artists that know how to translate the medium of photography itself into an outstanding piece of art by deeply analyzing social and anthropological dynamics.
More and more photographers became interested in creating work reflecting social media and especially dating apps where everybody uses photography as an act of self representation and key selling point on the meat market. Photographer Andrea Lavezzaro caught our interest with her project “It’s a match”.
Over a year she scouted Tinder users in Berlin. No matter the shape, size, gender or if they were strange, sexy or surreal. Her focus was on capturing the diversity of our city. Every picture was taken at the location where she met her matches (all aware she was doing a photography project of course). The only rule her subjects had to follow while taking their portrait was: no posing allowed. The results are now featured in an exhibition at Gallery Ori in Neukölln that runs until this Saturday. We had a little chat with Andrea about her project and how it will continue in the future. Read on after the jump.
What interests you about Tinder?
The diversity of characters one can find there. It’s no longer (if it ever was), a tool for a very specific target, different styles and proposals are reachable there, from the most common heterosexual guy looking for hook-ups to people looking for relationships, from experimental couples to slaves willing to clean your house (seriously) – it’s a diverse menu.
How did you come up with the idea for your photographic project?
Firstly, I was trying to photograph local people, and thought it could be a good tool to do a local series. Germans are not very open to have spontaneous street portraits taken. With a dating app I could easily ask for permission first.
Berlin seems like the perfect city for this kind of project. Do you think Tinder in Berlin works differently then anywhere else?
Berlin was perfect for the project indeed, because even when people don’t react well to the regular street photography here, it’s a city where it’s possible to find many others who are not only completely fine with the idea but are also very keen in showing off. I like that.
From what I heard, Tinder has different stigmas in different countries. I can’t really tell about Berlin though.
How did the first encounters go? Was it awkward at first?
Not awkward at all. It was a lot of fun to meet so many people – I’ve done 67 so far – and hear their stories, with absolutely no pressure of being on a date. They all knew I was doing a project.
In the description of your project, it’s stated that you are interested in capturing the insecure soul. What does this term mean to you?
This term was actually coined by my friend Keenan Pau who read his poetry about Dating on the day of the exhibition opening and will perform again at the closing (26 of November at Ori gallery in Neukölln).
Is the project finished or are you still scouting for subjects?
I want to reach 100, but right now I’ve deleted the app and paused the project as I already made it an exhibition and I’m busy with the upcoming project (also being shot in Berlin), but I do plan to continue.
Thank you Andrea for the Interview.