Matthew Baum: Syllables of Recorded Time
Some years ago, after reviewing his photographs at Photolucida, I featured the work of Matthew Baum on LENSCRATCH. I recently heard from Matthew who shared some bad news and this being the weekend of giving thanks, I thought I’d share his story in hopes you consider helping him recover from a significant loss.
I’ll let Matthew do the talking:
After four years of planning (saving money, refining a vision, etc.), I moved out to Napa Valley in late October with the intention of starting a photography education related business for locals and tourists. I put everything I owned in a Penske box truck, trailing my VW on a carrier behind. The first day I arrived, my buddy from college, and I (with our dogs) went on a hike in the valley. I sent my mom a picture and she said ‘that’s the happiest I have seen you in years.’ And it was true; I felt liberated.
Unfortunately, the night before I was to move into my apartment, the truck with all of my stuff in it and the trailered car were stolen. I lost everything I own, including 15 years worth of unique, irreplaceable artwork, several of my backup hard drives, all personal keepsakes, a growing collection of art from friends and colleagues, not to mention $30,000 in photo gear I need to start my business. Everything. At the end of the day, though I would, of course like to have everything back, I really only care about my work. It is heartbreaking to think it will end up in a dumpster.
This has been a devastating loss, on all levels. I have had to come back east to regroup, but am determined to get back to California as soon as possible. My car and the truck should be covered by insurance, but it is a gray area with regard to all of my possessions, including the photo gear. I am determined to get back out there as soon as possible and keep moving forward.
My sister and my best friend from childhood started up a GoFundMe crowdsourcing campaign to help me get back on my feet and on track. It has been amazing, friends, family and strangers reaching out to show their love and support. Certainly a silver lining in this dark cloud.
Some of the most meaningful support I have received thus far has been from my fellow photographers and artists, friends and strangers, who understand how important one’s work is to an artist. I am hoping that the campaign will raise enough so that I can get back to California and get the business started by February.
Please consider helping…any amount will help!
Matthew has been working on a new project, Syllables of Recorded Time, some images featured below.
Matthew Baum is a photographer, printer and educator until recently based in Brooklyn, New York. He earned a BA in American history from Brown University, studied architecture at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, and received his MFA from the School of Visual Arts. Matthew has been on faculty at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Hunter College and the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He was co-founder and director of the VisuaLife photography education program, working with underpriviledged youth in NYC. Matthew’s work has been shown at venues far and wide. He is currently in the process of relocating to California.
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