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NYC photos 1968-1972
October 18, 2007 8:06 AM   Subscribe

"New York City 1968-1972" Some very compelling black and white street photography by Paul McDonough. via
posted by CunningLinguist (49 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite

 
I can't figure out how to link to individual photos. You have to scroll sideways.
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:09 AM on October 18, 2007


The second picture looks like it could be a young Jim Cramer viewing the NYSE for the first time.
posted by wabashbdw at 8:14 AM on October 18, 2007


Great looking work. I've never seen this guy's work before. I'll check out the gallery, thanks for the tip.
posted by JBennett at 8:22 AM on October 18, 2007


That's one badass-lookin' priest.
posted by aramaic at 8:44 AM on October 18, 2007


Wonderful photos; I hardly even minded the sideways scrolling.

It really bothered me that I couldn't see the rest of the headline on the paper the guy with sideburns was carrying; it ended " 9!" and I wanted to know what it was about. The trials of an obsessive reader...
posted by languagehat at 8:45 AM on October 18, 2007


I dig it. It's like, groovy, baby. Gear.
posted by chuckdarwin at 8:50 AM on October 18, 2007


Very cool. I wonder how he does/did it....
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 8:51 AM on October 18, 2007


If there's one thing lamer than street photography it must be horizontally scrolling photo galleries.

...

But no, these are actually pretty good. Thanks
posted by dead_ at 9:18 AM on October 18, 2007


Had no one invented the comb or the hair brush in 1972?
posted by blue_beetle at 9:19 AM on October 18, 2007


The most strange looking are the mainstream conservative types.
posted by stbalbach at 9:51 AM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


These people look ugly and naive, in the most wonderful way.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 9:58 AM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


Also check out the photographs of Pablo Lopez in the same gallery showing. Beautiful and surreal landscape studies of Mexico City.
posted by gallois at 10:08 AM on October 18, 2007


Nice photos, but the only really happy person is the kid with the big 'fro next to the two girls kissing.
posted by Eekacat at 10:18 AM on October 18, 2007


Yeah, the priest with dark glasses totally looks like something from a Willaim S. Burroughs story.
posted by Afroblanco at 10:21 AM on October 18, 2007


Help! Church Police!
posted by zorro astor at 10:23 AM on October 18, 2007


I like the old man shoving his way through the parade crowd. What determination!
posted by breezeway at 10:25 AM on October 18, 2007


These people look ugly and naive, in the most wonderful way.

Don't we always? Cool pics.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:30 AM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


These people look ugly and naive, in the most wonderful way.

Hey, those are my people—show some respect! Whenever I look at photos from that era, I think "That's what people are suupposed to look like." Then I look at the world around me and think "Where did all you zombies come from?"
posted by languagehat at 10:50 AM on October 18, 2007 [2 favorites]


...and here I thought that was a Hooters reference.
posted by breezeway at 10:56 AM on October 18, 2007


Hey, those are my people—show some respect!

No offense intended. I think that these pics show how collapsable time and style are, reflecting how ugly and naive we are still, as hip and flawless as we might think we are. In the most wonderful way.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:46 AM on October 18, 2007


I was born in '68, in NYC. These pics remind me of snapshots my mom and dad used to take.
Love the skinny ties.
posted by bashos_frog at 11:49 AM on October 18, 2007


Lovely nostalgia seeing a number of familiar faces of people/kids I hung out with, played frisbee with, in Central Park, at The Fountain and The Rock in Sheep Meadow ( site of many of the huge Be-Ins of the 60's) in Central Park, in the late 60's and 1970. Amazing to see their faces all these years later.
posted by nickyskye at 12:00 PM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


This is great, thanks.
posted by alms at 1:49 PM on October 18, 2007


nickyskye, you don't mean literally, do you?
posted by CunningLinguist at 1:58 PM on October 18, 2007


great shots---i wonder what parade it was? and look how heavy all the makeup was, and how restricted most people on the street were, clotheswise.

nicky, you could have babysat some of the rest of us too : >
posted by amberglow at 2:42 PM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


It really bothered me that I couldn't see the rest of the headline on the paper the guy with sideburns was carrying; it ended " 9!" and I wanted to know what it was about. The trials of an obsessive reader...
I bet it was a sports thing.


Are the short-haired women holding hands a lesbian couple or just sisters? And what a cool juxtaposition with the next shot of 2 businessmen even closer together.
posted by amberglow at 2:47 PM on October 18, 2007


Funny you should say that amberglow because I was thinking how hip people looked then, lol. Deluded by nostalgia I guess.

Not the old farts though, who were in rigid outfits, but the kids.

Yup, did a lot of babysitting then. Survived on babysitting in fact, when I started running away at 13 in 1967. Would love to know how those kids are these days. Have thought of them with love all these years. And they probably wondered what happened to that crazy hippie chick babysitter who brought them buckets of snow to play with inside when they weren't allowed to go out and read them to sleep. Maybe some of them are MeFites? What a fun thought. Thanks.
posted by nickyskye at 3:03 PM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


we had hippie babysitters (when it wasn't grandma) but we were up in The Bronx--most teens were at least hippie-looking back then.

Think of me and a ton of others here as those kids--now in our 40s. : >
posted by amberglow at 3:07 PM on October 18, 2007


kids--now in our 40s. : >

ouch, painfully funny, lol
posted by nickyskye at 3:43 PM on October 18, 2007


I wonder how many are alive today or what type of lives they had?
posted by dasheekeejones at 5:12 PM on October 18, 2007


Very nice. Indeed, that priest (if that's what he really is...) is totally badass. And that badass chick next to him: are they together?

I like sideways scrolling for photo and image viewing. I find it a more elegant presentation. More like a book.

The old lady/beggar/Hare Krishna devotees picture is fantastic. Sure would love to have a print of that.

New York was better back then. I don't care what anyone says. It was just better back then.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:14 PM on October 18, 2007 [2 favorites]


Amazing stuff.

Reminds me quite a bit of Garry Winogrand.
posted by aladfar at 6:46 PM on October 18, 2007 [1 favorite]


really enjoyed this link, 'woman in steam' took my breath away, a really great snapshot.
posted by fatbaq at 7:33 PM on October 18, 2007


Languagehat: It really bothered me that I couldn't see the rest of the headline on the paper the guy with sideburns was carrying

I'm going to say... something about "The Catonsville Nine" ... though, admittedly, the exclamation point on the end seems a tad unlikely. Nevertheless, that's my theory, and I'm sticking with it.

Great link, Cunning!
posted by taz at 1:51 AM on October 19, 2007


you don't mean literally, do you

Yes, dear CunningLinguist, I do. I'm an old fart now, 54 this November and a number of those people I knew way back when, spent time with in the park at that fountain. Sorry not to have seen and replied to your comment earlier. I remember that guy with the big 'fro, the frisbee kid, in the woman sitting on the rock with the dogs playing photo I knew one of the young guys looking on, in the kitten pic I remember both the kid in the foreground and the girl behind him.

Cameras with long lenses were the big phallic symbol then. Always wondered what happened to the photographs and what they looked like. Now I know.
posted by nickyskye at 7:34 AM on October 19, 2007


Reason #98,650,298 that I love Metafilter.
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:46 AM on October 19, 2007


yeah, I love MetaFilter too for probably those same reasons.

And amberglow, where in the Bronx? Riverdale? It's such an interesting borough. I only know parts of it, the twilight zone City Island, time warp Arthur Avenue and the pretty far west below Riverdale near Van Cortlandt Park.

/derail, In the summer of 1967, age 13, I spent the summer on City Island and felt really isolated there, no kids I could relate to and so several times a week I used my brother's blue plastic boogie board, which looked like this but a bit smaller, and swam, paddled around the entire island. City Island as it looked in those days.
posted by nickyskye at 8:51 AM on October 19, 2007


Just emailed an old boyfriend from those days and he thinks, in the photograph with the kid holding the pup, that the guy on the right catching his girlfriend is an old classmate/friend (guy on the far left), John Segal, (otherwise known as Jay Jay French) founder of glam rock band [very fun video], Twisted Sister.
posted by nickyskye at 10:32 AM on October 19, 2007


And nobody was fat.
posted by DenOfSizer at 11:03 AM on October 19, 2007


... except for blind people.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:09 AM on October 19, 2007


Seriously, how cool is it to post a link to some four decade old photos and then find someone here knew the subjects? And one of them founded Twisted Sister???
posted by CunningLinguist at 11:40 AM on October 19, 2007


I bet even the photog doesn't know that.
posted by CunningLinguist at 11:40 AM on October 19, 2007


And amberglow, where in the Bronx?
Near the Botanical Gardens and Zoo--Mosholu Pkwy (not as fancy as Riverdale)
posted by amberglow at 12:44 PM on October 19, 2007


I'm an old fart now, 54 this November

You're younger than me, which means you're young. None of this "old fart" stuff!
posted by languagehat at 2:32 PM on October 19, 2007


New York was so much more unique, back then. I didn't arrive until 1973, but it still had much the same character (although I bet people who knew it longer saw the changes happening already).
posted by Goofyy at 8:25 AM on October 22, 2007


lh, I like being an old fart. Haven't become at curmudgeon... yet...

Seriously, how cool is it to post a link to some four decade old photos and then find someone here knew the subjects?

CunningLinguist , thought about your statement for a few days and wanted to say that in the late 60's Central Park was an extraordinary place to hang out. There were tens of thousands of interesting people there regularly for "the Happenings", political rallies, dancing, playing all kinds of instruments, playing frisbee, hanging out. And lots of oddball characters too, like Peter Brandon, the lover of the famous milliner, Mr. John. Peter went around always with his colorful macaws, while riding his bike. Beautiful, pre-heroin Jim Carroll, the poet I had such a crush on with his beautiful, long red hair.

There were awesome concerts all summer long, in the middle of the park, called "the Schaefer festivals" at Wollman Skating Rink. Tickets were a single dollar and went up to a couple of bucks. Two bands played at one concert. The pairing was amazing. Led Zeppelin, BB King, Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, The Who, Little Richard, Thelonious Monk, Blood Sweat and Tears, Chuck Berry, Jeff Beck...a gigantic and varied roster of rock, blues, world and jazz, summer after summer for years. Those who didn't get a ticket lounged around on the surrounding hillsides, tripping, drinking, having every kind of fun...

Suprised there hasn't been a book about it.

John and Yoko walked through the park often. They got their apartment in the Dakota, just a few blocks from the pictures of the fountain area you linked in your post. Abbie Hoffman was there (I was at his first Yippie Happening in the park). Lots of parkie kids went on to become renowned in one way or another. One kid was known for creating "the black box". Another guy I met there, Ken L. founded a media company, called Think Inc., which was decades ahead of its time.

There were the rich kids, sons and daughters of the Movers and Shakers of the Upper East Side going to private schools, who came to the park after school in their uniforms, blazers with crests. Harlem kids who came downtown to hang with the rockers. Kids who were in the entertainment business, ballet dancers, models, lots of models, musicians, actors. The kids of famous actors who lived in the city, the actors themselves, all kinds of wild proto punk types like David Peel and the Lower East Side, the acid dealers, Ben Stiller's parents, who were an early stand-up comedian duo, Stiller and Meara, were there often, the pot dealers, the peepers like they have in Japanese parks, predators, rapists, criminals. All mixed with nannies and perambulators, picnics, bicyclists, skateboarders, sailboat model aficionados, rowboaters, kite fliers and just people out for a walk. Typical, amazing NYC, just in the park.

It was a great meeting place. And there were many photographers, quite a few now world renowned. So it makes sense there are pictures of the park at that time. What surprises me is there there aren't more MeFites who knew exactly who were in those photographs.
posted by nickyskye at 9:47 AM on October 22, 2007 [2 favorites]


*a curmudgeon
posted by nickyskye at 10:43 AM on October 22, 2007


I took a very long walk through the park yesterday afternoon, and I spent part of it trying to see it through your eyes, the way it must have been back then.

I love NY.
posted by CunningLinguist at 11:25 AM on October 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


You're right CL, it is. How nice to think of your having a walk through the park thinking of this thread. I too often feel the companionship of MeFi conversations as I gad about the city.

Frankly, I like NYC more now than then. It's a healthier city in many ways, except sex was HIV free then. That made a horrible difference. The sex was pretty amazing in the old days. I feel sorry for the kids who grew up since 1980. They just didn't have the awesome sex that was available before AIDS.

But I think the effort of people to be more honest then, the fruit of the rebels, has changed American society radically in wonderful ways. The city is less racist, less sexist, more culturally varied, way safer in terms of ordinary crime and mugging. Mugging then was rampant. People are much more psychologically savvy now, better vocabularies of personal, psychological and emotional knowledge. Differences in style and body shapes, lifestyle choices are all better accepted now and they weren't then. People are healthier now, smoke less, they go to the gym, drink water, eat more veggies...

Each age has its beauty...I feel profoundly grateful for the joy the internet has brought me. Web friendships and conversations about any diverse, simple or complex subject under the sun, right at one's fingertips 24/7. All this knowledge, laughter, learning, fun, connecting and truth telling on the web. Indescribably wonderful. The black and white 'photographs' of this era are the threads of comments, in the archives. Or in this case blue and white.
posted by nickyskye at 7:30 PM on October 22, 2007 [2 favorites]


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