Stephen Sherman is a New York based photographer, working primarily in New York and Paris, and his work documents the rapidly changing face of the urban landscape of both cities. The work revisits the ideas of Charles Marville and Eugene Atget in a sense, and attempts to capture a disappearing civilization and way of life, both in Paris and in New York. The pictures aim to neither glorify the old nor negate the new, but to be a counterweight to the forgetting of our ideas of neighborhood and place.
All of the work is long term and on-going.
The Arrondissements Project started in 2000 and covers all twenty arrondissements. In that fairly short period of time, the evolution of some of the arrondissements has seen the disappearance of one way of life, replaced by another that seems like a totally different species. Stephen's images have become a sort of architectural anthropology of certain neighborhoods.
The High Line Project began in 2006 and grew out of his familiarity with the Promenade Plante in Paris, where the same idea was put into being and was finished in 2000. Sherman started photographing the project before construction began, and has been photographing it since then. What had once been an area of quiet isolation and a certain feral splendor, has been reborn in a neighborhood that has undergone remarkably rapid transformation, even by New York standards.
The Draped New York pictures are simply the outward manifestation, the banners of change that are constantly going on around us. They let us know change is happening, but they conceal that change and we can't really know if we are witness to construction, destruction or just some plastic surgery.