Published by Steidl. Text by Tom Huhn, Charles H. Traub.
These on-the-spot portraits of “the fallen”—the homeless of late 1970s New York and Chicago—were taken by New York–based photographer Charles H. Traub (born 1945) to reveal the dignity and unexamined humanity of those who were once intrinsic to the urban experience of American cities. In Traub’s own words: “It is my hope that these photographs of the tenants of the streets of uptown Chicago and the Bowery New York serve as a tribute to the grace of the ‘down and out.’”
Indifference and gentrification have displaced those who once inhabited the shelters that nurtured them. They were known to their neighbors by their names, eccentricities and their plight. Nelson Algren’s famous book A Walk on the Wild Side asks why “lost people sometimes develop to greater human beings than those who have never been lost in their lives”; Traub’s Skid Row confirms both this idea and these inhabitants’ place in the fabric of the city.
The more than 200 smartphone photographs in this collection were taken during American photographer Charles H. Traub’s (born 1945) everyday adventures over the past four years. The smartphone is a constant companion that makes photography a natural reaction to nearly any stimulus, an action as quick and unobtrusive as blinking a third eye. A stream of consciousness flows through Traub's photographic response to the places, things and people that catch his eye. His subjects are often ambiguous and presented with little context; yet once the images are compiled together they create a kind of pictorial completeness that is both soothing and disquieting. In flipping through the pages, readers are provided with a kaleidoscopic slideshow of moments from Traub’s daily life, curated so that each photograph amplifies the others as they lead the reader to the next sequence.
Twenty years ago, New York–based photographer Charles H. Traub (born 1945) abandoned all pretense of trying to find specific themes and subjects in his photographic wanderings, instead creating what he calls "Taradiddles," in which he fully embraced any and all ironic situations. This volume is a collection of trifles that in Traub's hands become matters of remarkable social commentary.
Traub's previous publications include Dolce Via (2014) and Lunchtime (2015).
Between 1977 and 1980, photographer Charles H. Traub (born 1945) ventured onto the streets of Chicago, New York and various European cities to take photographs of their inhabitants--male and female, young and old-at lunchtime. Colorful and direct, animated and intimate, the portraits are shot close to the subjects, composed seemingly off-the-cuff, focusing on just their heads and shoulders. Each subject reveals something of himself or herself to the camera: the woman who takes the opportunity to pose in dignified profile or the one who purses her lips in an exaggerated pout, even the somewhat less fortunate subjects caught adjusting their glasses or blinking. Charles H. Traub: Lunchtime is the first comprehensive publication of these striking color images, which were exhibited in the early 1980s in Chicago, New York and Milan. This volume maintains the cheerfulness and joy of the series, with lively pairings of photographs encouraging viewers to associate one individual with another in a new narrative of the street.
Published by Damiani. Foreword by Max Kozloff. Introduction by Luigi Ballerini.
In his latest collection, photographer Charles H. Traub (born 1945) turns his emphatically American gaze upon the streets and byways of Italy, from Milan to Marsala. Traub’s brilliant blues, reds and yellows accent the baroque posturing and gestures of strangers and ordinary people. Traub’s friend and guide, the late photographer Luigi Ghirri, said of the imagery, "you see our foibles, strip us bare, make love through the camera and then venerate us." Dolce Via is the first comprehensive collection of these vivid color photographs, which were made in Italy during the early 1980s. This publication includes contributions from American art critic, photographer and founding editor of Artforum, Max Kozloff, and the Italian poet, Luigi Ballerini.