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Henri Cartier-Bresson, Sur les bords de la Marne, 1938 © Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson & Phillips
Henri Cartier-Bresson, Sur les bords de la Marne, 1938 © Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson & Phillips

Dark City includes photographs by Lynn Saville taken across the US, as well as around New York City and an introduction by acclaimed author Geoff Dyer. Arthur Danto has described Lynn Saville as New York’s answer to Eugène Atget, because she “prowls her city at the other end of the day, picking up pieces of the past in the present, just before it is swallowed by shadows.” For her new monograph, Dark City, Saville focused on vacant spaces – shuttered storefronts, back alleys, blank billboards, empty lots – with the occasional ghostly figure hurrying through the frame. Working at twilight and dawn with a medium-format camera (setting up her tripod quickly so as not to attract police attention), Saville captured busy city streets de-populated and emptied out, industrial spaces and storefronts alike gone quiet. Colour and light come from the sky, streetlights, neon signs or surveillance lighting. Seemingly otherworldly, the images in Dark City also tell a more pragmatic story of the changing urban landscape – vacancies caused by financial crisis, and construction projects spurred on by economic recovery, gentrification and development.

Lynn Saville is a New York-based fine-art photographer who specializes in photographs taken at twilight and dawn – “the boundary times between night and day,” as she calls them. Saville studied at the Pratt Institute and Duke University. Her two previous monographs are Acquainted With the Night (Rizzoli, 1997) and Night/Shift (Random House/Monacelli, 2009).  Her work is represented by the Yancey Richardson Gallery in New York and is in the permanent art collections of major museums, corporations, and individuals. She lives in New York City with her husband, the poet Philip Fried.

Dark City, Urban America at Night
Photographs by Lynn Saville
Publisher : Damiani
Issue : 7 September 2015
80 illustrations

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Lynn Saville

Fine-art photographer Lynn Saville was educated at Duke University and Pratt Institute. Saville specializes in photographing both cities and rural settings at twilight and dawn, or as she describes it, "the boundary times between night and ...

Lynn Saville

I have been a roamer of limbo regions, one of our last frontiers—places that seem unloved and overlooked, cracks in the urban façade. When I discover a site that attracts me, I return to it at dusk. In this liminal period, natural light gives way to streetlight, moon...

Lynn Saville: James Estrin and Ruben Natal-San Miguel’s pick

The series by Lynn Saville was selected by James Estrin, Co-Editor,  NY Times Lens Blog, Ruben Natal-San Miguel, Photographer, Curator and Collector, ARTmostfierce, during portfolios reviews organized by The New York Chapter of the American Society of Media Photogr...