Zoe Strauss: Ten Years in The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and More

29 Oct 2013


Mattress Flip by Zoe Strauss. Image courtesy of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Zoe Strauss: Ten Years has received recent media attention in The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, the Village Voice, and Aesthetica Magazine's blog. The 2005 Pew Fellow's mid-career retrospective was first shown at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in early 2012 with funding from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, and is currently on view at the International Center of Photography in New York.

Thea Traff of The New Yorker writes: "Strauss provides us with an honest, uncensored view of economic and social realities in America. She often focusses on people on the fringes of society, or those who are 'just getting by.' [...] Strauss' photographs are grounded in her clear-sighted empathy, which allows the viewer to feel like part of the exchange between photographer and subject." Read more>

Ellen Gamerman of the Wall Street Journal explores the origins of the now-famous exhibitions of Strauss' work under I-95. "Her family gave her money for a camera on her 30th birthday, and she spent the next decade working on photographs to display under the highway. It wasn't just that the soaring pillars and elevated roadway of I-95 served as a striking backdrop, but the idea that an enormous flow of people in cars above could be so oblivious to the joy, pain and struggle below." Read more >

In the Village Voice, Brienne Walsh writes that "beyond her genius with portraiture, Strauss also has a unique ability to transform the quotidian or even ugly into something extraordinary." Read more >

Odette Gregory delves into the sometimes painful underbelly of Strauss' most well-known photographs in her review of the show for Aesthetica Magazine's blog. "She captures with uncanny precision the psychoses and traumas, sometimes jubilant, of the harrowed and haunted underclass. While there may be an aura of celebration in some of the direct and jaunty portraits she takes, ultimately a vaunted sense of ego captured photographically cannot transcend an obvious underlying marginality." Read more >