Lost and Found

Maisie

Late one snowy night in Chicago back in the early naughties, Davy Rothbart went out to his car and found a note tucked under the windshield:

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Amber had mistaken his Toyota Camry for Mario’s, and Davy’s imagination found poor Mario diligently at work while Amber’s blood boiled. Little deterred, she left the no-goodnik a note.

That incident–of happening upon written scraps discarded or left behind–inspired Rothbart, himself an accomplished writer, to launch Found Magazine, a collection of submitted “found” articles that give a glimpse into another time, another place, another life.

The phenomenon of ‘objects found’ anonymity was gaining foothold at the same time as the call went out to Rothbart’s cohort to spread the gospel and keep your eyes to the ground. (See the Post Secret movement, which encouraged the public to submit a decorated postcard divulging a deep, dark secret; the artful mail was packaged as a coffee table book, offering harmless voyeurism repackaged as a sociological experiment.)

Rothbart’s magazine gained popularity, and his parents’ basement, serving as warehouse for the thousands of artifacts that poured in from around the country, soon overflowed.  Glossy volumes have been published (including one of polaroids, and one of pornographic found items “Dirty Found”).

Rothbart took the show to the road and travels the U.S. to communicate the fun and the hilarity of finding things. Now he is in Europe on the first global tour, and stopping in Paris at boutique Colette.  On October 22nd, the downstairs Water Bar will host a special happening, and Rothbart’s newest book, Found, published by Cassell Illustrated, will feature the best of the magazine.

Colette, 5pm, October 22, 2008, 213 rue Saint-Honore, 1ere arrondissement

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