Too Hard to Keep: An Archive of Heartbreaking Personal Photos


A photograph of a deep bruise, a pet grave, a once-loving wink from the one who screwed your heart and mental health — we all have one of those stashed somewhere, festering away. Project Too Hard to Keep will take that off of your hands. Artist and instructor Jazon Lazarus is now accepting photos “too hard to view again” to compile one grand, emotionally-charged archive.

“The reason you can’t live with the photo or photo album I do not need to know. I am creating a repository for these images so that they may exist without being destroyed,” writes the keeper. Submitters must specify if they want the photo displayed as part of the cathartic project or kept hidden away, which really makes you wonder what’s in those private archives of THTK. They’re valuable enough that Jason Lazarus has willed them to a trusted friend in the case of his death.

The project is currently on view at University Galleries of Illinois State University with THTK drop-boxes planned to pop-up on educational campuses nationwide. Have a voyeuristic click through submissions below.

The first photograph submitted to Too Hard to Keep, and the first with permission for public display.