PDN Photo of the Day

Seldom Seen Shores of Staten Island

Cutting through the heart of Staten Island’s North Shore neighborhood, Victory Boulevard acts as a thread tying together the stories Gareth Smit tells in his series, “North Shore.” Though a part of New York City that is seldom seen, the North Shore is a “microcosm of contemporary life in the United States,” writes Smit in his artist statement. “In this age of isolationism,” he continues, “it is also a borderland – a place where the culture wars of our decade play out in the everyday lives of residents.”

Smit’s interest in the North Shore began four years ago after Eric Garner was killed by the police near the corner of Victory Boulevard in Tompkinsville. In the year following Garner’s death, Smit photographed Garner’s friends and family as they marched for justice and mourned his death.

Recently, Smit has focused on the community as it prepares to be transformed by $1.6 billion in public and private-sector investment.

The images he’s made are currently on view at the Photoville photography festival in Dumbo, Brooklyn. The annual festival, now in its seventh year, is free.

“At a time when politics seek to polarize and distort,” writes Smit, “‘North Shore’ offers a counter narrative.”

North Shore
By Gareth Smith
Curated by Paul Moakley
Presented in partnership with The Design Trust for Public Space, Alice Austen House Museum, and Staten Island Arts
September 13-23, 2018

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