At Chicago magazine, critic Claire Voon writes about a new monograph for photographer Vivian Maier—the first book to focus on her color images. From Voon:
Many of these photographs have never been seen by the public before; even Maier might not have gone as far as to examine the processed negatives. As Colin Westerbeck, former curator of photography at the Art Institute, writes in the introduction, “It’s not certain that she ever opened the boxes and saw the results herself.”
Maier’s 40,000 color slides date to the last 30 years of her life, from the 1970s to the 1990s. Many were shot in Chicago and New York with a 35-millimeter camera, which replaced the twin-lens Rolleiflex Maier had favored while shooting in black and white.
Browsing the spectrum of streetscapes, it’s apparent that she made the switch because she was thinking more about color. She captured conspicuous patterns, like a rainbow bouquet of balloons, but also vivid minutiae, like the flash of a cherry-red heel cheekily paired with a wan leg cast.
Read Voon’s whole piece at Chicago magazine. For context on the life, work, and ensuing copyright controversy relating to Vivian Maier—a longtime nanny and street photographer whose images weren’t known until after her death in 2009—Jillian Steinhauer and others have written extensively about her at Hyperallergic. An exhibition of Maier’s color photography is open at New York City’s Howard Greenberg Gallery until January 5th.