Photo of the Day: Helen Levitt, 1980

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New York City, 1980, Helen Levitt, (c) Helen Levitt Estate

Helen Levitt was a shy woman, who by her own admission preferred to let her photographs speak for her. And they did, in spades. Her work focuses, to a great extent, on relationships, with special attention given to children. Her use of color in the 1970s and 1980s was groundbreaking in its warmth and vividness, although one must see reproductions of prints she made to understand it. She expressed no preference between monochrome and color, saying her favorite was whichever roll of film she was shooting.

As late as age 90, Levitt could be found working on a book of her photos that she titled Slideshow, the 7th such collection. She passed away in New York’s Greenwich Village in 2009 at the age of 95.

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