Ken Schles – Invisible City
Steidl – 2016
The last copy, opened but as new
For a decade, Ken Schles watched the passing of time from his Lower East Side neighborhood. His camera fixed the instances of his observations, and these moments became the foundation of his “invisible city.” Friends and architecture come under the scrutiny of his lens and, when sorted and viewed in the pages of this book, a remarkable achievement of personal vision emerges.
Twenty-five years later, Invisible City still has the ability to transfix the viewer. A penetrating and intimate portrayal of a world few had entrance to – or means of egress from — Invisible City stands alongside Brassai’s Paris de Nuit and van der Elsken’s Love On The Left Bank as one of the twentieth century’s great depictions of nocturnal bohemian experience. Documenting his life in New York City’s East Village during its heyday in the tumultuous 1980s, Schles captured its look and attitude in delirious and dark honesty. Long out of print, this “missing link” in the history of the photo book is now once again made available. Using scans from the original negatives and Steidl’s quadratone technique to bring out nuance and detail never seen before, this new edition transcends the original of this underground cult classic. (Steidl)