About the Book:
Since 2012, Allah has been photographing people who frequent the corner of 125th Street and Lexington Avenue in Harlem. Shooting film at night with only the light pouring from storefront windows, street lights, cars, and flashing ambulances, he captures raw and intimate portraits of "souls against the concrete." Viewers are invited to look deeply into the faces of people living amid poverty, drug addiction, and police brutality, but also leading everyday lives, Allah seeks to dispel fears, capture human dignity, and bring clarity to a world that outsiders rarely visit. This nuanced portrayal of nocturnal urban life offers a powerful and rare glimpse into the enduring spirit of a slowly gentrifying Harlem street corner and the great legacies of black history that live there.
About the Photographer:
Khalik Allah is a New York–based filmmaker and photographer. His award-winning documentary film Field Niggas, whose name was inspired by Malcolm X’s “Message to the Grassroots” speech, chronicles summer nights on the corner of 125th and Lexington Avenue in the heart of Harlem. Allah’s eye for daring documentary portraiture and bold aesthetics takes us into a world in which beauty, bleakness, and raw spirit all intersect. From his early photographs of the Wu-Tang Clan to the present, Allah’s profoundly personal work goes beyond street photography to delve deep into the visual stream of consciousness that is Harlem.
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