The Neighbors, the latest project from photographer Arne Svenson (born 1952), began when he inherited a telephoto bird-watching lens from a friend and began to record the quotidian activities of his neighbors in the glass-walled apartment building across the street from his Manhattan studio. Completely unstaged and taken without his subjects' knowledge, the images capture his neighbors, framed by the structure of their own windows, in their unguarded moments: taking a nap, eating breakfast, talking on a cell phone. Simultaneously tender and voyeuristic, Svenson's carefully composed photographs have been compared to scenes from Vermeer and Edward Hopper―but the series has also sparked controversy and debate since it was first exhibited in August 2013, at a moment of acute national anxiety over surveillance and privacy. After extensive international press attention, The Neighbors series is collected here for the first time in a beautiful clothbound volume.
While the works convey a measure of social critcism, they are also highly formal and self-referential–and quite beautiful. (Christopher Lyon Bookforum)
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