Harvey Stein on Book Publishing

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Lifelong New York street photographer and educator, Harvey Stein, has published 9 books throughout his career and I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with him about several of them over the years.

When he finished his latest book, Then and and There, Mardi Gras 1979 we got together on a Zoom call to discuss the book and what he’s working on currently.

This book is quite different from Harvey’s past monographs. Its created from a collection of polaroid photos he made over 40 years ago at the Mardi Gras with a Polaroid SX70 “instant” camera. Something used by millions of consumers at the time to photograph family holidays and vacations. In fact my mother had one and it’s still around here someplace.

There is only one printing of the book, once it’s gone there will be no more. You can obtain a signed copy directly from Harvey by sending him an email at hsteinfoto@aol.com.

During our conversation I learned much more that the backstory behind the photos. Because it’s also about how Harvey made a real book, one that will be in peoples’ personal collections and in libraries for generations. All from a box of photos that he had tucked away in a drawer and almost forgotten.

It’s a story about how putting yourself out there and taking risks to show your own work can lead to unexpected opportunities.

It’s a story about overcoming the restrictions of the pandemic by using your photographic vision to tell stories about the people and places near you that were overlooked in the past.

And it encourages you to follow your interest and imagination to create projects that will hone your own skills and enrich the lives of your subjects.

Harvey is always a gas to speak with, and I always learn something new each time we speak. I come away from those conversations looking at my own work a little differently.

I hope you will too when you have a listen to our conversation.

About Harvey

Harvey Stein is a professional photographer, teacher, lecturer, author and curator based in New York City. He currently teaches at the International Center of Photography and has taught in several undergraduate and graduate photography programs. Stein frequently lecturers on photography both in the United States and abroad.

He was the Director of Photography at Umbrella Arts Gallery, located in the East Village of Manhattan from 2009 to 2019 until it lost its lease and closed. He has curated 66 exhibits since 2007. His photographs have been widely exhibited in the United States and Europe-89 one-person and over 165 group shows to date.

His images are in more than 57 permanent collections including the George Eastman Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the Bibliotheque Nationale.

He has had nine books of his photographs published, including Coney Island 40 Years (2011) and his two recent books, Mexico Between Life and Death (2018) and Then and There: Mardi Gras 1979 (2020). His work is represented by Sous Les Etoiles Gallery in New York City. See Harvey’s work on his website www.harveysteinphoto.com and @stein.harvey on Instagram.

Photos from the book

Links from the show

Other Interviews with Harvey on Street Photography Magazine

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