Joseph Szabo: Jones Beach

1 Aug - 18 Sep 2008

For the past 30 years against the backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean, Joseph Szabo has captured the melting pot of humanity on one of the America’s busiest beaches. We are delighted to announce Jones Beach, our second exhibition of photographs by Szabo. 

Amongst the sea of bodies on Jones Beach, Szabo’s camera isolates both rare moments of introspection and unashamed exuberance. Images of tanned muscle men, a catwalk display of beach wear, heavily oiled skin, masses of sprayed hair and shy adolescents reluctantly in swimwear all reveal the dynamics of the beach. These photographs show the city and all its different tribes of people displaced to the coast for the day. Divisions and class boundaries are temporarily forgotten along with inhibitions about body size and shape. With no agenda, the near perfect and the flawed are all documented with the same respect and tenderness in these vital photographs. 

Joseph Szabo was born in Toledo, Ohio in 1944. He studied photography at the Pratt Institute where he received his MFA. He taught photography at Malverne High School in Long Island from 1972 – 1999 and has also taught at the International Centre of Photography, New York for over 20 years. Szabo’s first book, Almost Grown (1978), was acclaimed by the American Library Association and faded somewhat into obscurity until it became a cult classic amongst a generation of young British and American fashion photographers. His second book, Teenage was published in 2003 and is a poignant chronicle of Szabo’s work. He is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Visual Arts Fellowship and his work resides in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University, The International Centre of Photography and the Bibliotheque National in Paris amongst others.