Photographic Convergence

Chris Higgins

Have you ever taken a photo, only to find that it mirrored an existing image?

Portland, Oregon photographer Lyza Gardner snapped this photo of grocery store aisles in an enormous Fred Meyer grocery store. The photo was later featured on Boing Boing and added to the Wikipedia entry on supermarkets. I heard about this because Gardner happens to be my neighbor and coworker, and this is just one of the many amazing images captured on her Flickr photostream.

Gursky photo
Gursky photo /

Some viewers have compared Gardner's image to a famous photo called

99 Cent

by Andreas Gursky (

read more about Gursky's MoMA exhibit

). They have a similar subject -- rows of groceries in a supermarket -- but have a surprisingly different effect on the viewer. One major difference is the use of color: Gardner's image is warm and yellow, while Gursky's is cool and blue. At their core, they're very similar photos, but separated in time and space.

Have you ever noticed striking similarities between two images? Similar convergences are explored in Everything That Rises: A Book of Convergences by Lawrence Weschler (read a sample, with sample images).