It’s no secret that cities are in a constant state of change; growing, gentrifying and evolving to meet its residents’ demands. No other city has changed quite as drastically and famously as New York in the latter end of the 20th century though – and photographer Richard Sandler was there to document it all.
In his latest book, The Eyes of the City, Sandler compiles his images of street style photography from 1977 to 2001. During this period he roamed the streets of New York City, focusing on the everyday people on the streets and the environments in which they live.
The photographs document the societal shift of New York and many sides to the city – from the juxtaposition between the crime, homelessness and drugs, and the wealth-fuelled, greedy Wall Street culture in the ‘80s, through to the ‘90s, when the city underwent an overhaul and gentrification was well and truly underway.
Richard Sandler’s black and white photographs give an un-staged insight into what this iconic city was like through some of its most turbulent and drastic decades. It’s not sugar-coated or one-sided, but a reflection of life from a native New Yorker.
Words by Angharad Jones. Images from The Eyes of the City by Richard Sandler, published by powerHouse Books