Throughout her career, photographic artist Amy Touchette has explored themes of social connectedness, making photographs of people within their social groups and communities. A documentarian and a street photographer, Touchette has utilized photography’s power to create authentic portraits of those who interest her.
“People – especially strangers – have always been an interest of mine. Because of the way photographs record time, I can experience fleeting encounters with people I don’t know on a much deeper, much more satisfying level.” Amy Touchette
Following on the success of this celebrated work, Amy Touchette will exhibit prints from her latest series, Street Dailies, at the legendary Max Fish Bar and Art Gallery, which recently re-opened at 120 Orchard Street (between Rivington and Delancey Streets) on the Lower East Side. All of the images in Street Dailies were published on Touchette’s Instagram feed @amostouchette and made using an iPhone – an additional tool in Touchette’s repertoire as she photographs in the tradition of the street photographers whose work she admires: Garry Winogrand*, August Sander, and Diane Arbus.
A collection of quintessential New York characters, the images of Street Dailies reveal Touchette’s appreciation for the communities and everyday lives of her subjects. The majority of the images were made in the Williamsburg and Greenpoint neighborhoods of Brooklyn, with some additions from Manhattan and Touchette’s travels away from New York City. Also included in the exhibition are images of filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles at home, filmmaker Albert Maysles at his office, and members of TV on the Radio in a moment backstage at Governors Ball Music Festival in June 2014. (Touchette’s boyfriend is part of the popular New York band.)
Touchette’s images reveal a compelling connection between photographer and subject, timed so that many of the people being photographed are looking into the camera. Dragging on a cigarette, shopping, laughing, touching, on duty or at work, we see these people fully inhabiting their lives. Within the formal constraints and pleasures of the photographic images, these split-second encounters result in uncanny interplay between subject and viewer. We feel curiosity and a desire to meet these people.
Trained at the International Center of Photography, Amy Touchette began her artistic career as a writer and painter, earning a BA in Literature and Studio Art and an MA in Literature. Her photographs have exhibited nationally and internationally, including at Moscow MoMA (Russia), the Pingyao International Photography Festival (China), Arte Fiera OFF (Italy), Noorderlicht International Photofestival and Noorderlicht Gallery (Netherlands). Previously represented by June Bateman Fine Art, Touchette joined ClampArt Gallery in 2013. For more information go to amytouchette.com.
Max Fish is a famed New York City art bar on the Lower East Side, owned by Ulli Rimkus. Rimkus was a member of the art collective Colab, which started in New York in the 1970’s and gained recognition from a series of exhibitions in non-traditional locations. The
Times Square Show, which Colab organized, cemented the prominence of the participating artists, including Jean Michel Basquiat, as well as the status of Max Fish as a haven for downtown artists. Originally located on Ludlow Street, Max Fish has re-opened on Orchard Street and continues to organize exciting, cutting-edge exhibitions. Max Fish is located at 120 Orchard Street. For more information go to maxfish.com.
EXHIBITION ON VIEW: NOVEMBER 24, 2014 – JANUARY 3, 201
*Garry Winogrand now, and until February 8 2015 in Paris, to the Jeu de Paume