Yvette Meltzer ~ Picasso's Playground in Chicago

I'd like to introduce you to some delightful work by fellow Evanstonian, Yvette Meltzer. These photographs sing and it seems like a wonderful portfolio to share this time of year. This work was produced by Yvette from her office window overlooking the Picasso Statue in downtown Chicago's Daley Plaza. Yvette's creativity and photographic eye are so strong, as she captures the spirit of childhood.

In Yvette's words...

"My office window overlooks Daley Plaza in Chicago in which the Picasso Statue stands. I have been captivated by the freedom and the spontaneity of children’s movements as they play on the Picasso Statue. The children there have a willingness to venture into the unknown, to explore with joy. Their free movements stand in sharp contrast to the photos that were taken of me as a child where I posed stiffly and often against my will. These children appeared to be living dolls which also tapped into my interest in dolls and doll houses which I also collect and photograph. I was also drawn to the interplay of color and light on the form of the sculpture which changes over the course of my eight hour day in the office. The images I captured are not staged but rather the spontaneous movements that I have viewed through my office window over the last three years.

I have been taking photographs of my family since age ten. Next I included my friends as subjects and gradually in my thirties, I turned the camera to people I did not know personally. My photography reflects my interest in people, the narratives of their lives, and the environments that shape them.

Children and youth have inspired my spirit and they continue to be the subject of many of the images which I have captured both locally and in my travels. This comes as no surprise to those who know me as I have been a life long children’s advocate whose professional career has focused on protecting the rights of children, working to keep their spirits free.

I viewed the Picasso sculpture as a playground on which the children were able to exercise their initiative, determination, confidence, and courage, as well as their muscles, as they climbed, often from a running start, away from their parents or grandparents or whatever adult accompanied them, motivated to interact with their environment. I see children as intrinsically strong, competent and powerful, and I think these images illustrate that belief."

You can see more of Yvette's work HERE.