Black and White
In “Black and White” American photographer Matt Carr uncovers a hidden world, capturing people and places that we know about but which receive little attention. While based in Prague in the 1990’s Carr photographed transforming urban landscapes. Soviet tanks had departed from Eastern Europe and Czechoslovakia’s new found freedom ushered in a new era of hope and self-identity for populations that had lived for decades under Communism. Their world is now suddenly on the move again. And yet some things are slow to change.
In particular, Carr focuses on transience: his men and women are photographed in passing, as they move along cobbled streets, wait for trains, or hurry through subway tunnels. Life progresses again more quickly now against the backdrop of timeless cities and towns that have not kept pace with the society that populates them. Dented and weather-beaten Trabants sit stoically under blankets of snow, seemingly ancient and immovable. Busts of Lenin and fallen statues serve as stark reminders of dead régimes. Carr’s stolen portraits of passing strangers on benches and buses are precise observations of weary and wary older folk and, by contrast, exuberant youth glowing with promise.
Matt Carr is a Brooklyn-based photographer who has worked for magazines such as ELLE, Esquire, Field and Stream, Newsweek, and Premiere. He is also a celebrity photographer for Getty Images as well as others.