“I always have my eyes up in the air looking in the sky.”
New York is a city, but it’s also often a leading man or woman — in film, song, and visual art. After all, love for New York was the driving principle behind the runaway success of Sex and the City, and for many people, that love is more than platonic. As natives, we understand why.
Karsten Staiger is an exceptional artist and photographer of both commercial and fine art images. He left his native Germany and had his first experiences here long ago. But it was fairly recently that he returned to New York and fell in love again — hard. Maybe it was something about coming back; you can see a place a thousand times before it suddenly leaves your head spinning with love.
And so, New York Love Story — a website chronicling Staiger’s feelings toward the City, which he embraces and photographs with intoxicating love — was born.
Unique to Staiger’s expression of love is his subject matter and choice point of view: of the sky and from the sky. He has sought out some of the most magnificent views of the City from high above the heads of us mere mortals. In fact, one notable aspect of his work is the absolute dearth of humanity.
We spoke with Staiger about his art:
“I’ve been up on these roofs. What kind of name should I give it? It’s falling in love with the City. It is my love story…it is everybody’s love story.
In ’95 coming from Germany — kind of escaping — New York gave me a home, a place I needed to be. It gave me a new life. Even if you don’t have a place [to be] and it’s…tough establishing yourself or getting into the city – it’s not just my story, its everybody’s story.”
“I discovered a whole different perspective. It’s very — what’s the word? — exclusive. I’ve been to places where nobody can really get [to] — and going there and being there all by yourself and seeing the whole city change in front of your eyes…I always pick times at dusk, because there is something really happening.”
“New York has some beautiful buildings, and when they built them back then [years ago] — they had some beautiful crowns and gargoyles up on top which nobody really sees on the ground unless you look up…and I always have my eyes up in the air looking in the sky.
[The city is always changing]…you capture it [once]…and you will never have this again.”