I think when you live in a place like New York City, the air is better in Coney Island, you can take a swim, it’s free, it only costs a subway ride to get out there. But I haven’t had that many altercations for somebody who’s done what I’ve done for so long and photographed where I have. Gilden worked on the series for a couple of years in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Colombia and was inspired to … Did you have some sort of routine when you were working on the Coney Island pictures? (Bruce Gilden/Magnum Photos) In Sight is The Washington Post’s photography blog for visual … Clad in construction boots, long trousers, and an army jacket with long sleeves, the photographer trudged back and forth along the beach, snapping sunbathers, circus sideshows, and all manner of eccentric characters strolling along the beach, midway and boardwalk. Though he cut his teeth on the sidewalks of New York City where he grew up, he has since made significant bodies of work in Haiti, Japan, Moscow, France, Ireland and India. They were suffocating in the city. Bruce Gilden got on with Texas, a sex worker, immediately. Revisiting the photographer's iconic project and reflecting upon the allure of photographing New Yorkers at leisure. It’s just not as interesting a place as it was. That doesn’t mean I’m the toughest guy on the street, but I’m tough and I know how to react. It’s just easier to make a picture look good, and easier to photograph a person because they’re not moving. It was hard walking in the sand, and I would do two full trips: Coney Island, Brighton Beach, back to Coney Island, and back to Brighton. Bruce Gilden/Magnum Photos. He just thought I was a white kid that could be persuaded easily to hand over  my camera. Viewed through Gilden’s probing, witty lens, Coney Island is a place crammed with characters. For the photo of the bodybuilder standing next to the shirtless old man, I read that you asked the younger man to stand there for the shot. There is Vasiliy, a retired criminal who murdered his stepfather. On the day of the Leica Magnum Paris event, I had the huge pleasure of meeting Bruce Gilden. I’d usually get there around one o’clock. Photograph by Bruce Gilden / Magnum. Interviews by Bruce Gilden. Gilden's work is testament to the idea that a great photo doesn't have to be easy to look at—it canbe raw, and uncompromisingly honest. Bruce Gilden joined Magnum Photos in … It has lost its color, just like New York City, it’s flat. The first time Bruce Gilden went to shoot pictures at Coney Island, he hitchhiked there from his home in Corona, Queens, because his car had been stolen. Yeah, because I knew what I wanted to photograph. Man, dog, cart The famous agency Magnum, which has overseen some of the world’s greatest photojournalism, has commissioned its members to consider the idea of ‘the decisive moment’ • The (More or Less) Decisive Moments print sale is on until 11pm, Friday 10 June, 2016 Photograph: Bruce Gilden/Magnum Photos Your blanket was up against someone else’s. I’d walk from one end of the beach – which was let’s say Coney Island, even though the beach did extend past Coney Island – all the way to the other end, which was Brighton Beach. . Advertisement. No – if people are gonna be lawless there, they’re gonna be lawless somewhere else. On the day of the Leica Magnum Paris event, I had the huge pleasure of meeting Bruce Gilden. There was no air conditioning, they were living in tenements, it was stuffy, the air was bad, they were roasting in the hot summer. So a day at the beach was great. After the official product announcements of the Leica M9-P and the 21mm f/3.5 Elmarit lens, I headed upstairs for some small appetizers and some wine. Bruce Gilden. New York City, USA, 1989. An Iconic street photographer with a unique style, Bruce Gilden was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1946. Sophie Darmaillacq is a journalist, author and Bruce Gilden’s wife. Gilden shares memories of a beach brimming with bathers and eccentrics, and his thoughts on how the iconic location has changed over the years. Whether these characters jostle for space in the frame or appear individually, the photos themselves display a sure-footed confidence that has since come to define what we think of as ‘a Gilden picture’ – fearless, in-your-face, often humorous. 45K likes. Is there an element of lawlessness at Coney Island? You have more trouble with weak people than you do with strong ones. I did a few portraits, okay, but other than those few all the shots are candid. 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