Paul Kessel: The Last Stop
Summer is coming to a close, but Paul Kessel memorializes New Yorker’s favorite summer wonderland, Coney Island in his new exhibition The Last Stop: Photographs of Coney Island. Opening on Thursday, September 7th and on view until September 30th, Kessel’s energetic street style photographs capture the excitement, commotion, and joy of the iconic amusement park.
Before Paul Kessel became a photographer, he was a clinical psychologist, psychoanalyst, and a university professor. Inspired by his classes at the International Center of Photography, he’s been a street photographer since 2008. Since then, he’s shown work in over 20 group exhibitions, winning many awards and publishing many of his images.
Many photographers take to the streets and boardwalk of Coney Island in attempt to capture the unique magic contained there. From Freak Shows to Mermaids, Tattoo Conventions to Burlesque shows, Coney Island is a welcoming oasis to those of us that live life on the fringe of society. People from all over the city flock here in the summer to ride rollercoasters, take a spin on the wonder wheel, and play a myriad of arcade games. The beach is free for all, and many soak up the sun, take a dip, and blast music on the beach while chowing down on Nathan’s Hotdogs. It is a photographer’s dream.
Kessel’s pictures display the commotion and elation of Coney Island in his crowded frames. Each image is brimming with a story; grinning children being dragged along by their mothers, rainbow haired rebels embracing their lovers, swarms of seagulls and the marching bands of Brooklyn. This body of work is a unique documentation of a unique place. Don’t miss it.
Paul Kessel: The Last Stop opens Thursday, September 7th from 6-8pm at the Umbrella Arts Gallery. The exhibition is on view until September 30th. Learn more here: http://www.umbrellaarts.com/exhibitions/