Through the Lens of Vivienne Gucwa

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Enjoy an intimate meet and greet with New York Through the Lens author and photographer, Vivienne Gucwa at the NY Flagship Sony Store (550 Madison Ave) on Thursday, November 6, 2014 from 5-7 p.m. You can register to attend here.

The relationship between New York City and artists of all mediums is the stuff of legend. The city seems to draw out something artistic or literary within anyone who has a longing to create. A new book of photography from Vivienne Gucwa, who was recently named as a SONY Artisan, captures the city’s sense of wonder and longing beautifully.

While brimming with gorgeous shots of the city, NY Through the Lens is more than a photography book. Interwoven throughout the book are passages from Gucwa’s blog where she discusses her images, her process of capturing them and photographing light, and her thoughtful musings on art and on the city itself.

Gucwa’s approach is incredibly atmospheric and the images at times appear almost otherworldly. This passage from her book speaks a little to her inspiration:

“I am endlessly haunted by a sense of saudade and sehnsucht as I explore the world with my camera. Saudade is a word of Portugese origin that refers to an intense desire for something other than the present; a dreamy wistfulness for things that are not found in the present environment. Sehnsucht is a word of German origin that can refer to a nostalgic longing for a faraway place that may or may not exist in reality but feels like home. Both of these types of longing are so profoundly experienced that ordinary reality usually pales in comparison.”

NY Through the Lens

A large part of what makes Gucwa’s atmospheric photography so enthralling is her mastery at capturing light. Through natural light she is able to convey seasons, moods, nostalgia, and introspectiveness in the midst of the bustle of New York. Throughout the book Gucwa’s discussion of her use of light is woven throughout her narrative.

“Sometimes the mundane is transformed into something magical via photography. Chasing light and understanding the nuances of light during different times of day can become something of an obsession. Appreciating how certain sunlight can transform an ordinary scene is something I never take for granted.”

NY Through the Lens

All of these effects of light and atmospheric qualities in Gucwa’s work together to convey more than just an image. Elements of storytelling emerge in her photographs and the scenes she captures spark the imagination and invite contemplation.

“Stories unfold on the city’s streets just waiting for a press of the shutter button to immortalize them, one frame at a time. In a city full of people, the pauses between moments of frenetic activity are some of the most beautiful moments. These pauses tell their own stories. Empty cafe tables just beyond an open door beckon explorers to sit a while and embrace the solitude. Faded signs on deep red brick are the left-over pieces of another time’s tales.”

NY Through the Lens

It’s an understatement to say that a love of New York and photography really comes across in New York Through the Lens. The book is a love affair with the city, a discussion of craft, a celebration of artistic longing and an introspective meditation on creative work.

Learn more about New York Through the Lens at