Culture

Vivian Maier Street Photographer

Words David Selby

Born 1st February 1926, an American of French and Austro-Hungarian decent, Vivian Maier moved freely between Europe and the USA in her formative years before returning to New York City in 1951. Having only become interested in photography two years prior, she honed her skills on the streets of NYC before leaving for Chicago in 1956, where she would spend most of the rest of her life.

Her photography was prolific, amassing a body of work of over 100,000 photographs and photographing well into the 1990′s. She was secretive about her photography and her work would come to light when in 2007 her photographs was discovered at a local thrift auction house on Chicago’s Northwest Side. 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 and her photographs have become famous worldwide.