Vivian Maier was an American street photographer born in New York City on February 1, 1926. She took more than 150,000 photographs during her lifetime, primarily of the people and architecture of Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles, although she also travelled and photographed worldwide1. Her work was discovered and recognized after her death in April 20091.
Maier’s photographs were first published online in July 2008 by a Chicago collector named John Maloof. Initially, the work received little response but went viral when Maloof linked his blog to a selection of Maier’s photographs on the image-sharing website Flickr in October 20091. Since then, Maier’s photographs have been exhibited around the world. Her life and work have been the subject of books and documentary films, including the film Finding Vivian Maier (2013), which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Maier’s photographs are known for their unique perspective and composition. She captured everyday life in a way that was both candid and intimate. Her work has been described as “a visual diary of a vanished world. “
Maier’s life story is as fascinating as her work. She was born to a French mother and an Austrian father and spent much of her childhood moving between the U.S. and France. She worked as a nanny for most of her adult life, but photography was her true passion. Despite taking thousands of photographs, she never shared them with anyone during her lifetime. It wasn’t until after her death that her work was discovered and recognized for its brilliance.
Today, Vivian Maier is remembered as one of the most important street photographers of the 20th century. Her work continues to inspire new generations of photographers and art lovers alike.