The Paris Gallery, Thierry Bigaignon is exhibiting 21 pictures of Harold Feinstein taken between 1960 & 1980 in New York.
His work gives off the strong and simple empathy of the stroller. Feinstein is among those looking at life with love.
I dont know if Harold Feinstein saw himself as a poet, Did he think of the link between text and images? Peter Galassi ex photography curator at Moma found this link in the work of BrassaÏ. He tied photography to the danse of curiosities magnified by words.
Feinstein looks at humankind this way. He immortalises the simple sunday pleasures, he is the witness of the non-stop activities of the town. Contemporary of «Brooklyn Is» of James Agee, written in 1939, but only published in 1968, he photographed the profusion of small details of the New York neighboods observed without weariness.
During those Twenty years he mastered his photographic skills as in ‘Man smoking in Diner’(1974) taken in a restaurant on 14th street in Manhattan. The rays of light are on the thoughtful face of the smoker,
the effects of the chiaroscuros caress the cutlery put aside , before taking on the smoking coffee. One can see the solitude, happy or not (who knows) of the man deep in his thoughts, a simple scene seen a thousand time in restaurants.Feinstein saw the soft light, and came very close without being intrusif.
An other picture ‘Dancers Arms’(1970) show the jumble of arms and the curved shoulders pressing on each others but not holding on.
There is almost no posing in the work of Feinstein isnamuch his pictures always seem natural, the directing remains very discret .There again photography meets fiction, window to reality.
With ‘Children in surf (1978) Feinstein takes a wide angle picture of children playing on the edge of the water. The scene is in Coney Island, but could be anywhere, the place is unimportant, it is for the moment only, the light makes the silhouettes undisguishable, the children play timeless games and run away from the heat in the sea spray.
No matter what, Feinstein is not only the photographer of Coney Island, the beach is a pretext to meet again the fauna of New York, as others would see in Montmartre the expression of the world.
Harold Feinstein, Graciously yours
May 24 – August 31, 2018
9, rue Charlot