Lower East and Upper West: New York City Street Photographs By Jonathan Brand (1957–1968)

The photograph should be more interesting or more beautiful than what was photographed. - Garry Winogrand

Jonathan Brand’s photographs time travel to New York’s Lower East and Upper West in the late 1950s and 1960s. Brand (born 1933), a native New Yorker, recorded the city he saw on his way to and from work as a census take and advertising copywriter. In his book Lower East and Upper West: New York City Photographs 1957–1968, we see “striking images of New Yorkers engaged in everyday pursuits, from the Bowery to Riverside Park, juice stands and barbershops to Theatre in the Streets”.

 

New York Jonathan Brand

Woman with her hand on her hip, holding a cigarette, 1963

Growing up, I don’t ever remember a time when my father was not taking pictures. He usually had two Leicas strung around his neck and would casually grab shots without breaking stride. Sometimes he didn’t even raise the viewfinder to his eye; he focused and adjusted the aperture almost automatically. This was in keeping with his unobtrusive style as a street photographer – matter-of-fact, almost anonymous.
Ulrika Brand, Jonathan’s daughter

 

New York Jonathan Brand

Theater in the Street performance, September 21, 1963

 

“My father bought his first camera in 1956 in Norway, where he was a Fulbright Student at the University of Oslo. Back in the United States, his love of the medium developed and grew through practice and study with some of the most accomplished photographers of the day: Richard Avedon, Garry Winogrand, David Vestal, and Bruce Davidson. Winogrand became a close friend and was his companion during lunchtime photographic forays in Midtown Manhattan. This work and relationship was the subject of a 2014 exhibition, Two-Way Street, at the Portland Art Museum in Oregon.”

 

Jonathan Brand New York

Jonathan Brand (American, born 1933), Garry Winogrand on 5th Avenue, New York City, 1967

New York Jonathan Brand

Boys on East Houston Street, 1960

New York Jonathan Brand

Two young men waiting at the corner, 1965

New York Jonathan Brand

Gentleman resting at the side of a building, 1967

 

Jonathan Brand

New York Jonathan Brand

Four related girls, one holding a cat, 1957

New York Jonathan Brand

Pontiac Bonneville and its proud owner, 1965

New York Jonathan Brand

Monika in sunglasses, 1963

New York Jonathan Brand

Mark Berghash on his bike, taking a break from his painting studio, 1964

New York Jonathan Brand

Orange juice stand, 1960

New York Jonathan Brand

Family out for a walk with collie, 1960

Jonathan Brand New York

Vermont family on a motorcycle, 1957

Jonathan Brand New York

Store vendor with watermelons in shopping carts, 1966

Window dresser striking a pose, 1960s

Window dresser striking a pose, 1960s

“7up your thirst away,” 1965

“7up your thirst away,” 1965

Jenny, Ulrika, and Monika on Swedish grandmother’s bedspread looking out the window toward Broadway at West 89th Street, 1967

Jenny, Ulrika, and Monika on Swedish grandmother’s bedspread looking out the window toward Broadway at West 89th Street, 1967

Via: Huck, Lens Scratch