24 hours of Flickr photos printed to fill a room

People upload thousands of pictures to Flickr every day, but the numbers and rates don’t give the picture count justice. For the Future of Photography Museum in Amsterdam, Erik Kessels printed 24 hours of Flickr photos:

As you might imagine, this results in a lot of images, that fill the gallery space in an avalanche of photos. “We’re exposed to an overload of images nowadays,” says Kessels. “This glut is in large part the result of image-sharing sites like Flickr, networking sites like Facebook, and picture-based search engines. Their content mingles public and private, with the very personal being openly and un-selfconsciously displayed. By printing all the images uploaded in a 24-hour period, I visualise the feeling of drowning in representations of other peoples’ experiences.”

[Creative Review via Waxy]


  • Really cool, but what a terrible waste of material.

  • Number of photos on Flickr = loads. Okay, got that. Wasting huge amounts of paper and ink to tell us something we knew already? Don’t get it. As a researcher I always try and ask the ‘so what?’ question. On this occasion, I don’t have an answer.

  • Sponsored by HP ink

  • The point is that the room is a way to visualize and comprehend enormous numbers. As an archivist who has to cope with these volumes from even professional photographers, I will keep this shot to help make a point. The only way this would be better is if the project figured out a way to represent the amount of metadata attached to each image. I’d bet it would be incrementally small compared to the heaps of images.

  • Can’t even imagine the printing costs… super cool idea!

  • Fran Schiavo November 16, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    This is a FAIL if the idea Kessels wanted to convey is “the feeling of drowning in representations of other peoples’ experiences.” What I see is the ability to find and enjoy the one photo that has personal meaning while ignoring everything else.

  • It’s ridiculous…

  • You could swim in all those photos!!!!

  • WOW! I went there yesterday with school! And now i read this –coincidence– it was really cool to see!

  • Like this picture of my cat? I’ll have you know it is in a museum.

  • That doesn’t look real

  • Oh rly? Picture overload, WHICH YOU’VE TAKEN A PICTURE OF AND PUT ON TEH INTERWEBS. moron hipster.

  • Yeh and for their next trick they’re going to write out a day’s worth of Wikipedia edits with a quill pen…

  • This is the result of 24hrs of printing… so what? Is it the performance of the printer showed here…?
    I’m sure you don’t want to make a point of showing how much pictures Flickr is hosting because we all know that is immensely higher than what you are showing here.
    And this comes at the time when the humanity is thinking about how much waste we are producing and how to recycle more.
    I think this is a good example of lack of understanding what problems we really have. A really offense to those who care about this planet…

  • Peter McFarlane November 25, 2011 at 1:12 am

    What a waste of paper, if all of that is just pictures WHY is there big pieces of cardboard in the shot foreground and background.
    1. What is the size of the room
    2. How deep is it filled
    3. Jeremy = Sponsored by HP ink ….. was this all from one set of Inks ?? … ha ha

  • Peter: I don’t think that’s cardboard, it looks like the bare parquet floor.

  • This is by far the biggest waste of paper and ink I have ever seen. Bye bye to all the ideas about ecology. I’m sure that there are other ways to make your point. As far as I am concerned I will not set one toe in that museum, how about that statement.

  • What I see is a big sea of copyright infringements, Apart from that, it’s pretty meaningless since nobody is actually exposed to all those photos—for example if i go to Flickr it’s usually because someone wants me to see one of their photos and has given me the link. You can’t very well drown in one photo.

  • Peter McFarlane November 25, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Mick, think you may be right … now I look again with that in mind
    still a waste

  • To be honest, that doesn’t even seem like that many photos at all, for 24hr worth of Flickr uploads, worldwide. And so what? People can share more now. Sure, there’s a lot of waste, but for most people, they’re sharing holiday pics with friends and family far away, and as one such expat, I’m thankful – I even wish my friends and family would upload more. It isn’t glut, and if you’re into more artful photography, there are countless resources (ha!) that can help you narrow it down.