April 2017


Susan Meiselas - Prince Street Girls Revisited

  • Thursday, 27 April 2017 - 6:30pm
AAR Lecture Room
Pebbles, JoJo and Roe on Baxter Street, 1978, Susan Meiselas / Magnum Photos

This event is part of the series New Work in the Arts & Humanities: American Classics.

In this lecture, award-winning photographer Susan Meiselas will discuss her reconsideration of a photographic series she produced in the late 1970s, Prince Street Girls. As Meiselas explains:

In 1975, nearly thirty-five years ago, I was riding a bicycle through my neighborhood in Little Italy when suddenly a blast of light flashed into my eyes, blinding me for a moment. Its source was a group of girls fooling around with a mirror trying to reflect the sun on my face. That was the day I met the Prince Street Girls, the name I gave the group that hung out on the nearby corner almost every day. The girls were from small Italian-American families and they were almost all related. I was the stranger who didn’t belong. Little Italy was mostly for Italians then.

The project Prince Street Girls began as a series of incidental encounters. They’d see me coming and call out, “Take a picture! Take a picture!” At the beginning I was making pictures just to share with them. If we met in the market or at the pizza parlor, they would reluctantly introduce me to their parents but I was never invited into any of their homes. I was their secret friend, and my loft became a kind of hideaway when they dared to cross the street, which their parents had forbidden.

One of the Prince Street Girls, Pebbles, moved from New York to Naples and now has a number of grandchildren. She is the starting point of my revisiting the Prince Street Girls.

Susan Meiselas is the Henry Wolf Photographer in Residence at the American Academy in Rome in the spring of 2017.

The lecture will be held in English.

Please note: valid photo ID is required for entry into the American Academy in Rome. Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than cm 40 x 35 x 15 (inches 16 x 14 x 6) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.