Acclaimed Swedish photographer Lars Tunbjörk brings the clarity of foreign eyes to the once-gritty corner of Eighth Avenue and 42nd Street in New York, discovering its Hopper-esque morning stillness and its abstract shapes. Aperture Foundation is pleased to release this limited-edition photograph, as featured in The New York Times Magazine Photographs (Aperture, 2011).
This image originally appeared in the Times on May 18, 1997, in a portfolio focusing on Times Square. The editor, Kathy Ryan, assembled a roster of photographers, each of whom would bring a very different eye and sensibility to the story. Tunbjörk reflects about his image: “Forty-second Street at the time was a strange place, with all the abandoned cinemas and porno palaces—like a big empty theater set. I took this picture on a sunny Sunday. I love sunny Sundays in New York; the air is clean, and the light is so crisp and hard. I thought of the paintings of Piet Mondrian when I saw these buildings and the strong colors.”
Lars Tunbjörk (born in Stockholm, Sweden, 1954) spent the 1970s photographing for several national newspapers and publications in his native country. He has exhibited widely in Sweden, including a solo show at the Moderna Museet. Additionally, he has had solo and group shows across Europe and in the United States, including at the International Center of Photography in New York. His work is in many private and public collections and he is represented in New York by the Amador Gallery.