Show creates dialogue about life in ‘Outer Boroughs’


A man lounging on a recliner with beads of saltwater on his bare chest is not what people in the city’s financial district would expect to encounter on the rush to work or during a lunch break. But he and a number of other denizens of the outer boroughs have taken over two blocks of downtown Manhattan by way of an outdoor photo exhibit running through the summer.

The show, organized by Brooklyn-based United Photo Industries, features images by photographers from the Bronx and Queens on Water Street and photos by artists from Brooklyn and Staten Island on Gouverneur Lane — all of it about four blocks away from the New York Stock Exchange. 

The Press’ photography editor Marisol Díaz represents the Bronx.

The financial district’s hustle and bustle might not quite be conducive to sessions of sweet silent thought. But for visitors or passersby willing to pause in front of the pictures, the subjects offer a dialogue about life beyond the island of Manhattan.

The photos cover a wide range of people and time periods, from working-class Staten Islanders in the 1970s to Native American women in contemporary Queens.

Christine Osinski’s photo of the abovementioned man on the beach contains a subtle undertone of eroticism. 

The subject’s supine posture and frank gaze seem to taunt aspiring masters of the universe with their suggestion of a Baudelairean world of pleasures that comes at a cheaper cost than endless workdays and unreasoning taskmasters’ demands.

Another photo by the same artist conjures up an entirely different universe. In Ms. Osinski’s “Boy Pointing Rifle at Miller Field,” a massive, leafy tree and an antique car frame a child brandishing a toy gun. 

Right down to the tiny, suggestive rifle, the composition conjures the same atmosphere as Terrence Mallick’s 2011 cinematic fall-from-grace fable, Tree of Life.

Representing Brooklyn, Irina Rozovsky gives viewers a tour of Prospect Park, where she finds intimate moments among groups of families and friends. In one photo, a trio of women in colorful, South Asian garb cast languid lines on homemade fishing rods. 

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