Ron Haviv – Lost Rolls

While researching how people share and look at images of environmental and humanitarian horror, I came across Ron Haviv.

I felt I could learn a lot about the ethics of looking from the co-founder of photo agency VII, who is also an award-­winning, Emmy nominated photojournalist with books highlighting the atrocities of war under his belt.

And I did. But it was the story about the 200 old films he found that pulled me astray. Having discovered a number of film canisters that he had no clear idea of what they contained, he went about processing the rolls. And he found “Magic. Pure magic”.

The subsequent images on their less than perfect negatives/slides provided the inspiration for a new book. When processed the pictures covered a period from 1988 to 2012. They included images of friends, riots in Northern Ireland, presidents, girlfriends, South American gangs and a kaleidoscope of people and places.

Fig. 1: Ron Haviv. Date unknown. Hasidic Jews, Brooklyn, Lost Rolls.

I think I was drawn to this, not only because I know I have a film or two somewhere waiting to be given life to, but also due to my fascination with stories; with the lives of others.

I feel there is more for me to unpack around ideas of lost and found memories, but I feel discovering this work has planted a kernel of an idea for a future project.


HAVIV, Ron. Date unknown. ‘Hasidic Jews, Brooklyn, Lost Rolls’. [online]. Available at: [accessed August 5, 2018].


HAVIV, Ron. 2015. ‘The Lost Rolls’. Available at: [accessed August 5, 2018].