Richard Sandler - The Eyes of the City


The Eyes of the City is a collection of work from Sandler's 40 year career in photography.December 6, 2017 — The Gallery at Leica Store Miami is proud to present Richard Sandler's photo exhibition, The Eyes of the City. The collection will debut on December 6, 2017 with an opening reception at 7:30pm, and be available for public viewing from December 6, 2017 – February 20, 2018. 

Says Sandler about his exhibition, "The photographs in this show were made in New York City (and Boston) between 20 and 40 years ago, and they depict a complicated time that lives in limbo: they are too young to be historical records of the distant past, and too old to resemble today’s  high tech malaise; Thus, these are pictures from the 'recent past,' and as such, they reveal the time just before the mass proliferation of computers, cell phones, digital cameras and the internet.

New York was a mess and there was no way to filter the realities of the broken city, and there was no refuge in virtual space yet. For better and for worse, one was simply ’on the street,’ 'in public space,' bathing in the comforts, (or terrors), of the human sea.

Underground, graffiti tags and spray painting exploded onto every surface and whole subway cars were “bombed,” windows and all. Above and below ground, crime and crack were on the rise, rents were cheap, many souls were homeless, and tourists avoided the city. 

The Times Square and the East Village streets, though dangerous, were also havens for an edgy art scene with dozens of galleries and music clubs. In mid-town, and on Wall Street, the rich wore gaudy furs in unprecedented numbers, and like now, the extremes of wealth and destitution were on parade.To some, the New York City of the recent past was a hell on Earth, yet to others it was one of New York’s most fertile artistic periods.

I had one eye out for soulful and ironic juxtapositions, and the other out to record civic history itself. I shot 4 – 5 rolls of film everyday and safely danced with the city’s ghosts."

To view more of Richard's work, visit his website. To learn more about his career, please read the wonderful feature about him in the New York Times Lens Blog.