Lee Friedlander is celebrated for his ability to weave disparate elements from ordinary life into uncanny images of great formal complexity and visual wit. And few things have attracted his attention—or been more unpredictable in their effect—than the humble chain link fence.
Erected to delineate space, form protective barriers and bring order to chaos, the fences in Friedlander’s pictures catch filaments of light, throw disconcerting shadows and visually interrupt scenes without fully occluding them. Sometimes the steel mesh seems as delicate as lace; at others it appears as tough as snakeskin. In this book’s 97 pictures, drawn from over four decades of work, it recurs as versatile, utilitarian and ubiquitous—not unlike the photographer himself.