I.D. Badges


This collection of 250 photo I.D. badges, manufactured between the 1930s and early 1950s, constitutes a collective portrait of the American worker. These vintage badges were all that was necessary to prove one’s authentic self and place in society. We once believed a vernacular portrait was sufficient in proving identity, but now we are faced with the conflict of proving who we are in a world where the theft of identity threatens us each day. These faces, combined with names and companies or job titles only provide insight into the societal and political aspects of everyday life. Though we will never know of their private identities, the badges have a humanizing effect.¹


¹ Text and video courtesy of Ricco Maresca Gallery, New York