Exhibition Sampler: 'Street Shots NYC'

"Whatever" by Giovanni Savino, from "Street Shots, NYC" at the South Street Seaport Museum. Photos courtesy of the artists and the Museum of the City of New York.

New York street life. So visually rich (i.e., weird, ugly, beautiful, tense, endlessly surprising) that as a photographic subject it is a genre all to itself, with roots as deep as Jacob Riis and early 20th-century documentary photography.

Though it’s long been out of favor in the gallery scene, anyone who thinks great street photography in the city has all been done—or is no longer being done—has only to see “Street Shots, NYC” at the South Street Seaport Museum, now on view. The juried show of photos taken within the last 10 years is culled from some 6,000 submissions by hundreds of photographers, pros and amateurs alike. It is a testament to the keen, fresh eyes that continue to scan our city streets.

“The show gives you a sense of the energy and the action that happen on the city streets and at the same time there are these moments of observation,” said Sean Corcoran, curator of photographs and prints at the Museum of the City of New York, which now runs the Seaport Museum.

Those moments, he says, are partly fostered by the city’s pedestrian-intense grid.

“There is this collision of people every couple hundred feet, a continual stopping, waiting for a light, crossing, meeting, colliding into each other.”

“These are places where interesting people are mixing,” he adds. “I don’t think there is any place like it.”

The South Street Seaport Museum, 12 Fulton St., is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Admission is $10 and free for children under 9.

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