Happening Now: Planning for a Photo Retreat in Ireland and Scotland

Xiomaro’s Street Haunting

The genre of street photography has its roots in the centuries-long tradition of the peripatetic artist searching for inspiration.  Since cameras did not exist, Leonardo da Vinci had a little sketchbook dangling from his belt. He would roam the streets of town looking for interesting faces and expressions to inform his work.

Instead of a sketchbook, Virginia Woolf recorded her experiences in Street Haunting, a 1927 essay describing the profound impact of wandering through London.  The transient and ordinary scenes of daily life became rich sources of reflection and vicarious imagination about the complexities of human existence.

New York City’s gritty hallucinatory swirl of energy and diversity of people is a torrent of wonder and fascination for quickly finding and capturing the compelling moments buried within the mundane – all while not using Photoshop, filters, or artificial intelligence.  Dramatic, weird, and ghostly moments that smartphone-gazing commuters will miss are frozen for our exploration.  Ambiguous and enigmatic scenes, demeanors, body language, and surroundings propel one to resonate with private interpretations.

If Virginia Woolf were alive today and substituted her pen for a camera, she might have taken photographs that look something like what you see in this gallery, which were exhibited at the Starlight Gallery at New Jersey’s Mayo Performing Arts Center (October 17 to November 28, 2023).  The exhibition overlapped with three events – Hispanic Heritage Month (and the Mexican community’s anticipation of The Day of the Dead), Halloween, and diminishing daylight as the clocks got turned back one hour.  So it was fitting to select street photographs with a darker theme.

These and other photographs will be published next year in the book, Street Photography of New York City: Street Haunting in the Big Apple (Fonthill Media).

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Any image or text or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever – including any and all uses in connection with artificial intelligence technology – without my express written permission. Violators will, and have been, prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Xiomaro logo by Azul Burger. Photos of Xiomaro by Barbara Cittadino.