Out My Window, Chelsea Family Dinner, 2011

by Gail Albert Halaban

"I've been spying on my neighbors. It’s gone on for decades. The Manhattan apartment where I grew up faces hundreds of windows, each providing its own show, in a vast array whose delights grew up around me. As a child, in the nights leading up to Christmas, I would spend hours looking into windows, counting how many were decorated with lights. When I got older, I’d scan the same windowscape for distant figures in states of undress. Through the 1970s and 1980s, we marked Passover by gazing out our dinning-room window to another family’s Seder, across the way and a few floors down. Year after year, the family was there, its home gleaming with candles and good silver, a constant part of our sacred tradition. We never knew their names or exchanged a word with them. Yet what we surely knew, but never talked about, was that they and our other window-neighbors were watching us, too. However, to acknowledge the gaze would be mortifying. Even now, I have a hard time admitting having watched."

—Gail Albert Halaban

This photograph comes from Gail Halaban’s series Out My Window, a beautiful collection of photographs acknowledging the unspoken voyeurism by New York City inhabitants.

Paper Size: 20 x 15 15/16 inches
Image Size: 19 x 14 1/8 inches
Edition of 15 + 3 Artist Proofs
Signed and numbered by the artist

About the Artist

Gail Albert Halaban (b. 1970, Washington, D.C.) received an MFA in photography from Yale University. She has taught at the Pasadena Art Center, International Center of Photography, and Yale, among other notable institutions. She has been included in both group and solo exhibitions internationally. Her previous books include Out My Window (powerHouse, 2012) and Gail Albert Halaban: Paris Views (Aperture, 2014). She is represented by Edwynn Houk Gallery in New York.

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