Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows

If you don't know Vivian Maier, you should!

Photo Center NW is proud to announce an upcoming exhibition of photographs by Vivian Maier (1926 – 2009) from the Jeffrey Goldstein Collection, featuring silver gelatin prints of images selected from the book, Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows, by Richard Cahan and Michael Williams of City Files Press. The exhibition puts Maier’s work in the context of her life during her highly creative period from the 1950s through the 1970s.

In addition to her known street photography, this exhibit will feature a prolific selection of images that show an artist with relentless curiosity that worked in a vast range of subjects and styles. Maier’s unique ability to brilliantly capture the zeitgeist is particularly apparent in shots of Chicago’s famous Maxwell Street and in protest scenes shot during the social unrest of 1968. Echoing the chapters in the upcoming book, the exhibition is organized to reflect nine of Maier’s personal journeys from the pastures of rural France to the streets of downtown Chicago, “Snapshots,” “America,” “Day,” “Maxwell,” “Beach,” “1968,” “Downtown,” “Walks,” and “Night.”

Maier’s work was discovered in Chicago in 2007 when boxes of abandoned prints, negatives and undeveloped film were sold at auction. Born in New York, Maier spent much of her youth in France. Starting in the late 1940s, she shot an average of a roll of film a day. She moved to Chicago in the mid-1950s, and spent the next 40 years working as a nanny to support her passion for photography. Maier died at the age of 83 before her work was ever publically recognized or exhibited.

Since her exhibition debut in 2010, Maier’s work has been shown at the Chicago Cultural Center, Russell Bowman Art Advisory in Chicago, Steven Kasher Gallery in New York, Jackson Fine Art in Atlanta, Stephen Cohen Gallery in Los Angeles and by the Hearst Corp. in New York. Vivan Maier: Out of the Shadows is the first exhibition to expand on her photographic legacy, examining her images within the framework of a life story that continues to be unraveled by art enthusiasts and historians.

“Vivian’s photographs tell her life story,” said Michael Williams, co-author of Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows. “She was way ahead of her time—recording what she saw on a daily basis with a joy and curiosity that makes her work so compelling.”

Maier shot many of her most iconic pictures while working for various suburban Chicago families, a job that allowed her to periodically travel both domestically and abroad, as shown in her photographs of New York, South Dakota, Florida, California, as well as the rural pastures of Southern France. Images she snapped are combined with interviews with those who knew her best in the book, told by the authors.

“We went far in documenting Vivian’s life, but she loved being a woman of mystery,” said Richard Cahan, co-author of the book. “Even her photographs—clear, forthright images—only go so far in revealing her. That’s what great photographers do.”

The exhibition will feature posthumous, 12”x12” silver gelatin prints produced in editions of 15 and signed on the verso by Jeffrey Goldstein and by master gelatin silver printers, Ron Gordon and Sandra Steinbrecher.

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  • Jeff L.

    wonderful exhibition. sorry some of you could not attend. it was well worth it. Seattle Film group is going this week.

    February 5, 2013

  • Alan L.

    20 people have changes their RSVP today alone. Many in the past couple of hours. The gallery was preparing for over 80 people and we are down to sixty. Add the noshows and I'm guessing we will end up with thirty. Again, the gallery was expecting almost 80 and is paying employees to be there. This is unacceptable. Changing your RSVP the day of the event is the same as being a noshow. This is disappointing.

    2 · February 3, 2013

    • Chris G.

      You make several valid points. But that being said, a RSVP is a RSVP. RSVP: "The person sending the invitation wo­uld like you to tell him or her whether you accept or decline the invitation." Those of us that have planned events know how important it is to get an accurate head count. If a person makes a RSVP, then they need to honor it (or cancel within a reasonable time). Period. I am sure that the SuperBowl messed a lot of people up- but just ignoring a previously made RSVP is just not right. My 2 cents...

      February 4, 2013

    • Terry N.

      Thank you Allen for organizing this trip. Although not as many people showed as initially expected, the Photo Center was happy to host you! We are normally open from 12-8pm on Sundays, and many nights are open until 10pm. I hope that anyone who was unable to make it to see the Vivian Maier exhibition last night can stop by and see her works another day! The exhibition will be up until March 23rd. Cheers!

      February 4, 2013

  • gretchen t.

    Thanks Alan for setting up this meet up -
    this exhibit of Vivian Maier's work is a must see.

    February 4, 2013

  • Shannon O

    Some amazingly beautiful shots on exhibit.

    February 3, 2013

  • Karen P.

    Terrific exhibition!

    February 3, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    It was great to see first-class prints of Maier's wonderful images for the first time. I had only seen them online before this. Since the exhibit space is small, the small turnout made it easier to view all the prints, but how disappointing that there were so many noshows.

    February 3, 2013

  • Brian X.

    Nice to have this opportunity to see some of Vivian's work. Thanks for setting it up.

    February 3, 2013

  • Kevin M.

    Very mice exhibition.

    February 3, 2013

  • Kristina T.

    I'm so, so sorry. I forgot about this, totally. I hadn't turned over my calendar to February. We went up to fir Island looking to photograph birds this afternoon! So sorry!!!

    February 3, 2013

  • Alan L.

    Three words... DVR!

    February 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    She was a superb street photographer! I am looking forward to seeing these prints of her remarkable work.

    1 · December 3, 2012

    • Jeff L.

      i agree. a great street photographer who maximized black and white to its best while creating a subtle strength within each of her captures. have view many on line and looking forward to the exhibition.

      December 4, 2012

  • gretchen t.

    Looking forward to seeing a collection of Vivian Maier's work. Remarkable talent...remarkable back story.

    November 19, 2012

  • Chris G.

    There are two major collectors of Viain Maier's work. The largest, and most well known is the John Maloof collection. His story is here: http://www.vivianmaier.blogspot.com/ This PCN exhibit is by the other collector, Jeffrey Goldstein, who is lessor known and has a smaller collection. It is not exhibited as much a Maloof's photos. This is a must see! http://www.vivianmaierprints.com/

    November 19, 2012

  • Brian X.

    If there's room I'd like to bring two guests -- but they don't know yet.. So please say if it's too small for guests. Thanks!

    November 19, 2012

64 went

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