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Alvin Baltrop: The Piers

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Powerful, lyrical and controversial, Alvin Baltrop's photographs are a  groundbreaking exploration of clandestine gay culture in New York in the  1970s and 80s. During that era, the derelict warehouses beneath  Manhattan's West Side piers became a lawless, forgotten part of the city  that played host to gay cruising, drug smuggling, prostitution and  suicides.
Baltrop documented this scene, unflinchingly and  obsessively capturing everything from fleeting naked figures in mangled  architectural environments to scenes of explicit sex and police raids on  the piers. His work is little known and underpublished--mainly due to  its unflinching subject matter--but while often explicit, his  photographs are on a par with those of Nan Goldin, Peter Hujar and  Enrique Metenides.
While the outside world saw New York as the  glamorous playground of Studio 54, Warhol's gang and the disco era,  Baltrop photographed the city's gritty flipside; his work is an  important part of both gay culture and the history of New York itself.  This clothbound volume compiles the Piers series in one definitive monograph, a powerful tribute to a long-forgotten world at the city's dilapidated margins.
Alvin Baltrop  (1948-2004) was born in the Bronx, New York, and spent most of his life  living and working in New York City. From 1969 to 1972, he served in  the Vietnam War and began photographing his comrades. Upon his return,  he enrolled in the School of the Visual Arts in New York, where he  studied from 1973 to 1975. After working various jobs--vendor, jewelry  designer, printer--he settled on the banks of Manhattan's West Side,  where he would produce the bulk of his photographic output.


  • Hardcover :  128 pages 
  • Product Dimensions :  12 x 0.8 x 9.4 inches 
  • Publisher :  TF Editores; 1st Edition (October 27, 2015)