Posts Tagged ‘Times Square 1950s’

A photographer captures Times Square in color

April 12, 2012

Born in Paris in 1906 and trained as an architect, Andreas Feininger arrived in New York in 1939.

He soon landed a job as a staff photographer for Life magazine, which lasted into the early 1960s.

In that time, he had the opportunity to shoot all kinds of people and places. He’s known for his sweeping black and white vistas of the city skyline, buildings, and industry.

But it’s his color photos of 1950s Times Square that capture something magical and luminous.

The eerie glow of billboard lights, sidewalks slick with rain, and faceless bodies milling about under theater marquees depict Times Square’s midcentury beauty and mystery.

“I see the city as a living organism: dynamic, sometimes violent, and even brutal,” he reportedly said.

See more of Feininger’s haunting, glorious New York photos (mostly in black and white) here.

An “empathetic observer” of 1950s New York

February 27, 2012

During the week, Greenpoint native Frank Oscar Larson made a living as an auditor, and eventually a vice president, of a Manhattan bank.

But in his spare time, he was an avid street photographer—and his intimate, sometimes haunting images are finally getting their due.

In 1949, after his kids were grown, Larson spent the next decade on “weekend expeditions around New York with his beloved Rolleiflex Automat Model 4 camera around his neck, produced thousands of images which he developed in a basement darkroom,” states the website for the Queens Museum, which is exhibiting Larson’s photos through May 20.

“Some were printed and entered in photography competitions where he won awards, but most remained undiscovered until the cardboard box of negatives that had been packed away since Frank’s death in 1964, was found,” the site explains.

Larson’s shots focus on regular people, and they transform mundane moments into richly atmospheric and vulnerable scenes in many neighborhoods, including Times Square, Chinatown, the Bowery.

Many more examples of his work can be found here.