In his series, Neighbors, photographer Arne Svenson peers through strangers’ windows to reveal very intimate, personal moments. According to his bio, the photographer stepped outside of his typical studio work to explore the relationships between himself and his Manhattan neighbors when he inherited a telephoto lens from a friend.
To develop the series, he pointed his camera across the street to focus on his unsuspecting New York neighbors. Elegant compositions feature anonymous people set behind glass panes, and their stories are fragmented by the strong dividing lines of the window frames. Svenson says he is “not photographing the people as specific, identifiable individuals, more as representations of human kind, of us. Careful not to reveal identities–the strength of the imagery lies in fact that we can see ourselves in the anonymous figures.”
However, the series is also an exploration of urban life in which humans have constant interactions with others and there is very limited privacy. The isolated subjects have retreated into the safety of their own homes. In that solitude, we all believe we have a moment of respite, yet it’s interesting to see how even the most private moments can be exposed to the public eye.