New York Love Song
Helen Levitt's Lyrical Photos
Few cities in the world receive as many artistic tributes as New York, New York. Roughly 3,800 songs hit the charts, marking time to the city that doesn’t sleep. Countless painters, sculptors, and performers. Infinite strokes of genius.
But we’re willing to bet that today, no creative medium gets off to the beat of the Big Apple as much as photography–and it’s impossible to celebrate those images without toasting to Helen Levitt.
Helen Levitt: Five Decades opened at Laurence Miller Gallery in New York on November 8 and runs through December 22, 2018. The show features vintage prints gifted by Levitt to James Agee and his family in throughout the 20th century.
Levitt met James Agee in 1938, and the two hit it off immediately; the two were mutually inspired by each other’s perspective of New York. In 1946, Agee authored an essay about Levitt’s work for her book, A Way of Seeing, and while we don’t know the true depths to which their relationship reached (Agee was married with children), he lusted after her work as though it was warm and curved to the touch.
In the introduction to A Way of Seeing, he wrote, “At least a dozen of Helen Levitt’s photographs seem to me as beautiful, perceptive, satisfying, and enduring as any lyrical work I know.”
Come on, darling. Dance with us to Levitt’s love song to New York.