inside & out 2006-2018
When I was a young photographer the street was where you wanted to be. All our heroes were out on the street, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank, Garry Winogrand, Lee Friedlander, strolling, stalking, pouncing. Some invoked the image of the flaneur, particular the Europeans, the flaneur being the boulevardier, strolling along, twirling his cane like Charlie Chaplin, pretending to see nothing but observing everything. Voyeur, the person in the shadows, invisble while being visible, might fit the American street shooter better. Judgmental seldom; humorous and satirical often; that was the street photographer. So following my mentors I found myself on the street, photographing anything of interest, not worrying about whether it was documentation, opinion, history, or anthropology: all it had to be was curious.
Later photography became conceptual, idea-driven, serving social and political issues, and street photography drifted out of fashion, but the flaneur remained curious to see what was out there in the street. And it wasn’t just out there, it was also in there, rooms, chambers, halls, public and private spaces, what was happening in those places?
The pleasure of seeing never waned; in fact, as cameras became cellphones it became easier to blend into the street because the camera was now in the pocket instead of around the neck and when you took your camera out everyone else had their cameras out too: we had all become street photographers, flaneurs and voyeurs, visible, yet invisible.