New York

Zoe Strauss

Silverstein Gallery

Philadelphia-based photographer Zoe Strauss’s first New York solo show might be described as the art-world equivalent of Sylvester Stallone’s run up the art-museum steps: a life-affirming, fist-pumping, I am here! performance. (As she elegantly put it, “A super fancy gallery in Chelsea? Fuck yeah! It was awesome.”) But lest the ethos be wholly, or even principally, buoyant, her exhibition’s title, “If you reading this”—culled from a graffiti-plastered wall, captured in the first work on view, which reads in its blunt entirety, IF YOU READING THIS FUCK YOU—expediently brought things down to earth, and, more to the point, back to the street.

That this connection to locality is appropriate is suggested not only by the subject matter of Strauss’s images—by and large composed of present and erstwhile South Philly inhabitants, which is to say, the artist’s neighbors, here captured sloppily kissing

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