Photo courtesy of FREE FILM

The FREE FILM project wants you to document life in New York City

WORTHLESSSTUDIOS is distributing film and organising workshops this summer for photographers of every level.

by Nicole DeMarco
01 June 2022, 4:01pm

Photo courtesy of FREE FILM

Over three years ago, New York artist Neil Hamamoto travelled across America in an airstream caravan-turned-darkroom, handing out disposable cameras to people he met along the way. The developed film culminated in FREE FILM: USA, a collective visual diary created by photographers all across the country. Over the last few years, Neil and WORTHLESSSTUDIOS, an organisation supporting local artists that he founded to help produce engaging public art, have launched three iterations of the FREE FILM Project to catalog communities around the world — democratising the documentation of our ever-shifting reality in the process.

Neil and his team distributed nearly 1,600 rolls of 35mm film to image makers in 18 cities across America in 2019, developing over 40,000 images. The following summer, as Americans took to the streets in protest after the killing of George Floyd, WORTHLESSSTUDIOS initiated FREE FILM: JUNE 2020 to empower artists engaging in the moment.

Now, the project returns home to New York City — after all, it all started on Canal Street — in an attempt to document community and local culture in each borough, neighbourhood by neighbourhood. The first destination is Red Hook, where WORTHLESSSTUDIOS has partnered with Pioneer Works to distribute film from their airstream caravan and teach photography classes. Photographers of all ages and every level are invited to pick up a roll and respond to the prompt “ONE SQUARE MILE,” and have the chance to be featured in the resulting FREE FILM: NYC photo book.

FREE FILM: NYC is kicking off at 133 Imlay Street on Sunday June 5th from 3pm–5pm. You can find out more about the project’s events and workshops by subscribing to the WORTHLESSSTUDIOS newsletter here.

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