Jose Cámara’s collages from his series ‘Swapped Trips’ play on the ubiquitous family snap, those pictures found in dusty attics, under beds, in old boxes, old drawers, are passed down through generations, memories etched on the collective unconscious of the family, that tell a grand narrative that supersedes the individual, says everything about us, who we are and where we came from.
You might say that this project was a re-organisation of family life, the creation of a myth, a play on personal history. To begin with Cámara digitized all his family pictures from 1970 – 1986 and all his personal photos taken on his travels from 2007 to the present day. Once completed he collaged the two together, created a false archive, a fantasy catalogue, a family journey that never existed in which people and objects, related to his early years, appear in places where they had never really been.
For Cámara this wasn’t merely an artistic exercise but rather an emotional experiment; a redefining of his family and his relationship with those close to him through the re-appropriation of archival images. The altering of memories and the movement of people within specific settings challenging his view of his upbringing, his life, his family, his prejudices.