Pleasant Street

Judith Black


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120 pages
90 images
255 × 255 mm
ISBN 978191913288082

When JUDITH BLACK moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1979 with her four children, a friend asked her if they were going to be all right there. Frankly, she didn’t know.

They had just moved into a dilapidated apartment in a neighborhood that the real estate lady admitted was as good as they were going to find. The small convenience store down the block had “fuck you” fiercely spray painted on the clapboard - a less than encouraging welcome for a family that had grown up in the bucolic hippie house they shared with Black’s siblings in New Hampshire. Things didn’t seem very promising for a single mother with little income and a houseful of young children.

Over the the next two decades, Black would make a series of images that chronicled the lives of her young children, and her relationship with them.

“I quickly realized that I was not going to be able to roam the streets to make photographs. I had limited time between working at MIT as an assistant, attending classes, and being a mother. Our apartment was dark, but it became my studio.” - Judith Black

“While it shouldn’t have taken decades to see this work, it’s worth the wait. I feel the same rush of enthusiasm I felt when I first encountered Black’s work when I was twenty-one. Her photographs make the ordinary world around me feel more alive and worthy of attention.” - Alec Soth

“These are intimate and complicated images seeking to make sense of the challenges of a working mother and to record the home that served both as sanctuary and studio.“ - Financial Times