Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows
A Riddle, Wrapped in a Mystery, Inside an Enigma
Piecing together Vivian Maier’s life can easily evoke Churchill’s famous quote about the vast land of Tsars and commissars that lay to the east. A person who fit the stereotypical European sensibilities of an independent liberated woman, accent and all, yet born in New York City. Someone who was intensely guarded and private, Vivian could be counted on to feistily preach her own very liberal worldview to anyone who cared to listen, or didn’t. Decidedly unmaterialistic, Vivian would come to amass a group of storage lockers stuffed to the brim with found items, art books, newspaper clippings, home films, as well as political tchotchkes and knick-knacks.
The story of this nanny who has now wowed the world with her photography, and who incidentally recorded some of the most interesting marvels and peculiarities of Urban America in the second half of the twentieth century is seemingly beyond belief.
An American of French and Austro-Hungarian extraction, Vivian bounced between Europe and the United States before coming back to New York City in 1951. Having picked up photography just two years earlier, she would comb the streets of the Big Apple refining her artistic craft. By 1956 Vivian left the East Coast for Chicago, where she’d spend most of the rest of her life working as a caregiver. In her leisure Vivian would shoot photos that she zealously hid from the eyes of others. Taking snapshots into the late 1990′s, Maier would leave behind a body of work comprising over 100,000 negatives. Additionally Vivian’s passion for documenting extended to a series of homemade documentary films and audio recordings. Interesting bits of Americana, the demolition of historic landmarks for new development, the unseen lives of ethnics and the destitute, as well as some of Chicago’s most cherished sites were all meticulously catalogued by Vivian Maier.
A free spirit but also a proud soul, Vivian became poor and was ultimately saved by three of the children she had nannied earlier in her life. Fondly remembering Maier as a second mother, they pooled together to pay for an apartment and took the best of care for her. Unbeknownst to them, one of Vivian’s storage lockers was auctioned off due to delinquent payments. In those storage lockers lay the massive hoard of negatives Maier secretly stashed throughout her lifetime.
Maier’s massive body of work would come to light when in 2007 her work was discovered at a local thrift auction house on Chicago’s Northwest Side. From there, it would eventually impact the world over.
Exhibit Preview Night - Friday, January 17th, 2014 6:30 to 9:30pm
Join us for the first look at Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows. This entertaining and educational evening includes a reception with tasty food and drink. A talk and book signing with Richard Cahan, author of Vivian Maier “Out of the Shadows,” and Jeffrey Goldstein, owner of the collection and Vivian Maier Prints will join in a discussion on Maier, the ”Nanny Photographer.”
The evening’s live auction gives you the chance to bid on select silver gelatin prints in limited editions of 15 at 50% off their current gallery price. In addition, all gallery prints will be 20% off throughout the evening.
All of the evening’s proceeds will go to our non-profit PATCKids, which inspires the next generation of photographers by providing disadvantaged youth the opportunity to see their world through the lens of a camera.
Admission $25 Purchase Ticket (All proceeds benefit our non-profit, PATCKids)
Opening Reception - Friday, January 24th, 2014 6:30 to 9:30pm
Join us for the opening reception for “Vivian Maier: Out of the Shadows” with tasty food, drink and live music and guests Jeffrey Goldstein, owner of the collection, and Anne Zakaras, Collection Coordinator.
Admission Free and Open to the Public
Panel Discussion/Film Premier - Saturday, January 25th, 1:00 to 4:00pm
Join us for the premier of “The Vivian Maier Mystery”, and panel discussion with collection owner, Jeffrey Goldstein and Ron Gordon and Sandy Steinbrecher, master gelatin silver printers for the collection.
Admission $10, Members Free Click here, Public $10 Admission Purchase Seat (Seats are limited, reserve yours today)