I have been on a photographing blitz these last few weeks, having professional teams shoot some of my favorite projects. One thing we always discuss on these shoots is the collections I help curate for my clients. I find that the most interesting interiors have some sort of collection represented. In most of the work I do, I love to help clients find touch stones with their past so that they come to fully understand how it influences their current taste. Most of my conversations about early childhood experiences revolve around what they collected. Collecting as a child is not a unique phenomenon, but the items they collect certainly can be. What I find most interesting is what people tend to collect or not to collect as adults. In recent years, I have worked with a variety of younger clients who do not collect anything at all…In fact they readily dispose of items that they do not see as useful or view as clutter.
I am in no way promoting clutter, or hoarding!, but I do think the question of collecting is an interesting one and so I have been reading up on why we collect. Some of the articles are downright disturbing, suggesting that unloved children collect to seek comfort in accumulating. Or that collecting is motivated by existential anxieties and therefore, the collection, which is an extension of our identities, lives on even when we are gone. I am not going to lie…this last explanation definitely hit a nerve as I tend to hold dearest those things which my grandmother collected because I want her memory to be here forever.
Another article suggest that the hobby of collecting includes seeking, locating, acquiring, organizing, cataloging, displaying, storing, and maintaining the items being collecting. WOW! I can honestly say that I only take pleasure in the finding and the displaying- I will leave all the other labor to the serious collectors. Perhaps collecting may not seal my permanence here on earth, but while I am here I will keep collecting and sharing.
Do you have a collection you cherish? We would love to hear what it is!