When I moved to Soho in 1985 the neighborhood was in transition from light industrial factories to an arts district. Walking along West Broadway you had to dodge the trucks backing into the loading docks of the light industrial manufacturers. The new galleries supported the hardware store which is now a fancy restaurant and the paint store which is now probably occupied by a Gucci store. There were only a few bars and restaurants back then – some of which closed at the end of the day when the factory workers left. It was changing fast and so was I.
I felt like I was at the center of the art world in Soho. From the back window in my loft I could look across the airshaft and peek into the Castelli and Sonnabend galleries on West Broadway. When I had color film to develop I would grab the opportunity to walk through Soho to drop it off at the lab and stop in galleries on the way back to work. I had to get out of the darkroom and studio and get some fresh air, so the walk to the lab and the galleries were a great opportunity to think and clear my head. I loved living in New York and was energized by the excitement and creativity that seemed to perfume the air around me.
When Assisting Dick Durrance II we usually had 2 weeks off between trips and then it was like I was a tourist in New York. I would go to museums and galleries, movies and shows and restaurants knowing that soon enough we would be back on the road with a grueling schedule of shooting. I also used the time to get back in the darkroom and make photograms. Just as I was creating a corporate location portfolio on my trips to Ohio I was also putting together a portfolio of darkroom work to get jobs making photograms for commercial and editorial uses.