NEW YORK, NY.- Laurence Miller Gallery
presents Helen Levitt: Pairs and Apples from June 14 July 21. The show highlights Levitts unique gift for capturing the way people communicate through body language, with special emphasis on one of her perennial interests: pairs of people sharing a moment in the streets and on the stoops of her native New York City. Helen had a singularly lyrical eye and, whether its two children dancing in the street or two nuns perched at the bank of the East River, her work never fails to show the playfulness that is at the heart of human interaction. Not surprisingly, Helen reveals this in animals as well, joyfully sharing two New Hampshire pigs in a barnyard kiss, from 1986.
This 30 print show surveys these themes across her six decade career, featuring both her classic black and white work which began in the late 1930s, as well as her pioneering color work from 1959 on through the 1980s. Among the works selected are a number of unique first prints, including two 4x5 contact prints of a gypsy boy at home, shot in 1939 using her friend Walker Evans camera and flash. The slight turn of the boys hand was the key to Helens choice to publish this one over the variant.
Part of the pleasure of Helens pictures is their glimpse of an old New York, before television and air conditioning, when people were lined up on their stoops like the fruit in a street vendors display. Conversely, Helens work is forever young because its true subject is the ageless spark between two people (or animals).
Helen Levitt: Pairs and Apples is the gallery's final exhibition at 20 West 57th Street, since the building is scheduled for demolition. Laurence Miller Gallery plans on reopening in Chelsea in September.