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Chapter 20: Lomography Everywhere

Overwhelmed by so much popularity the Lomographers took courage and arranged an appointment with Lazar Zalmanov at LOMO PLC. They dressed up in their school-leaving suits and got on the Russian Aeroflot to St Petersburg. Their mission: to keep the production of the LOMO LC-A alive.

21. The Lomographers happily handing over their present, a 5-Litre bottle of whisky, to LOMO PLC Director General Klebanov. 22. The Viennese crew presents Lomography to the St Petersburg officials. 23. Editor Manfred Zollner sporting the LOMO LC-A in the preface of the German ‘Fotomagazin’, February 1995.

The Lomographers were brought back down to earth upon their return to Vienna. It was time for the Economy, Law and German graduates look for respectable jobs and focus on taking life seriously. Unfortunately, they were not able to dedicate their entire lives to a middle-aged Russian compact camera and to the organization of crazy events. Or could they? In any case, at this time the Lomographic Society had no financial ambitions whatsoever, it was financed by culture funds, the student’s own pockets and by Viennese friends who practiced Lomography as a hobby.

But soon there came a knock at the door of the student flat. The Bavarian photo editor Manfred burst into the world of the Lomographers and turned it upside down. His 12 page article on Lomography in the reputable German “Fotomagazin” boosted the profile of Lomography in Vienna. The red telephone in the flat rang non-stop, the newly bought fax machine spat out kilometre long messages and the letterbox was filled everyday with 50-100 letters and postcards. “We want a Lomo!” resounded from North Germany to South Burgenland! Overwhelmed by so much popularity the Lomographers took courage and arranged an appointment with Lazar Zalmanov at LOMO PLC. They dressed up in their school-leaving suits and got on the Russian Aeroflot to St Petersburg. Their mission: to keep the production of the LOMO LC-A alive.

24. The personal computer made work a lot easier for the Lomographers.

For the successful implementation of this mission they bought a 5 Litre bottle of whisky at the airport to give as a present to Director General Klebanov of LOMO PLC. This time he greeted the Lomographers personally (finally they looked like respectable people as they approached) and immediately drew up the first proper contract between the Vienna Lomographic Society and the St Petersburg LOMO PLC factory. This stated that 1,000 LOMO LC-A’s would be delivered to Vienna. If this went well and the Lomographers still wanted more cameras then the contract could be extended.Everything seemed to go well. The Lomographers were excited about saving the LOMO LC-A and the united future of Lomography as a global cultural movement. As the Lomographers sat on their return flight home and nodded off, exhausted after the complicated negotiations and the strong Vodka, the senior management of LOMO PLC met in Chugunnaya Street. “Oh my word, I never would have dreamed that the LOMO LCA would become so popular” smirked PR man Zalmanov; “for many years now in Russia nobody has taken charge of the little thing.” Director General Klebanov took the last sip of his tea from a porcelain cup and concluded his summary: “In any case, I am pleased that we were able to sell the Lomographers the last of our cameras where we produced the individual components. We still need to put the cameras together but at least big expensive production halls are no longer necessary. Then our time with the LOMO LC-A is over. It’s high time that this camera was finally withdrawn from our range of products.”

25. Lomographers in action. LomoTravel Vietnam, 1996.

Have the full glory of the book here

written by ungrumpy

2 comments

  1. superlighter

    superlighter

    hats off to these intrepid modern culture heroes!

    almost 4 years ago · report as spam
  2. rav_bunneh

    rav_bunneh

    The last picture is begging to be made into a Lomographic game "Lomo Leap Frog!"

    almost 4 years ago · report as spam

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Italiano, Deutsch, Português, 中文(简体版), 日本語 & Spanish.