The lost New York – through the lens of Saul Leiter

Late American artist and photographer Saul Leiter was one of the early pioneers of colour photography. Now, the Fotografie Forum Frankfurt is honouring his groundbreaking imagery with a comprehensive retrospective…

Alternative streetscape of New York

It took some time for the leading photographers to embrace the dawn of colour photography. But Saul Leiter began producing such images back in 1946, making a statement to his peers. Until his death in 2013 shortly before his 90th birthday, he had been roaming the streets of New York, camera in hand, capturing everyday impressions such as storefronts, cars, signs, or passers-by in his own unique way. As he did with his paintings, Leiter often made use of abstraction; blurred details, dominant shadows and obstructive elements feature heavily.

Deserved recognition

Leiter’s life work was underappreciated until recently, an oversight that the Fotografie Forum Frankfurt is now looking to address with the ‘Saul Leiter Retrospektive’, held in co-operation with Deichtorhallen Hamburg and the Saul Leiter Foundation. The exhibition will showcase more than a hundred of Leiter’s works, including his early monochrome images, his growing preoccupation with colour, and even the sketchbooks and photographs he was working on just before his death.

Photos: Saul Leiter / Fotografie Forum Frankfurt 

The 'Saul Leiter: Retrospektive' exhbition is open now, and will continue until 1 March 2015. You can find further information at