Brian Young in conversation with Joseph Rodriguez

The Train NYC 1984

The Train NYC 1984: Brian Young in conversation with Joseph Rodriguez

Thursday, September 22nd | 7 pm
Seating is very limited, RSVP to advised
Suggested Donation $5

Join us September 22, 2016 at 7 pm for a discussion between photographer and master printer Brian Young  and photographer Joseph Rodriguez as they discuss Young’s new publication Brian Young: The Train NYC 1984.

From the publisher Damiani: Brian Young first arrived in New York City in 1984. He witnessed all the well-known ills of ‘70s and early ‘80s New York, finding the city slowly, haltingly recovering from an economic depression. Industry and manufacturing jobs had left the city, and the population continued to drain out to the suburbs. The “crack epidemic” was on the front pages and on the streets. Abandoned shells of burnt-out cars littered the roads and muggings were simply a fact of daily life.

Young found his camera increasingly drawn to the subway system–one of the great social levelers of life in New York City and, increasingly, the canvas for an explosive profusion of graffiti. Brian Young: The Train NYC 1984 collects the photographer’s quiet, black-and-white shots of the subway from 1984, bringing a vanished New York evocatively back to life.


Brian Young has dedicated himself to analog B&W photography since 1980. He moved to New York in 1984 to attend classes at the ICP in Documentary Photography. During this time, he explored the city and photographed what living there in the mid 80s was like. The East Harlem Project, an collaborative photo-slideshow documentary  by eight photographers was produced.

In 1986, he began assisting Eugene Richards in the processing and printing production of b&w images for Richards’ book, Below The Line: Living Poor in America. He continued this collaboration for over 25 years. He started Phototechnica Inc., a analog B&W studio in 1992 and has since printed for numerous other renown B&W photographers. He has produced book prints for over 20 important books and many more B&W exhibitions for museums around the world from a diverse group of exceptional international artists.

In addition to being a Master Printer, Brian Young has taught B&W photography at the ICP since 1988 and has taught workshops in  Brazil, Mexico and Spain. In today’s world of Digital Imaging, he continues collaborating with photographers who still believe in the unique beauty of film and the gelatin silver print. To this end, he has also started to publish work from his archive of which “The Train NYC 1984” will be his first book. He optimistically hopes this new direction will result in another book…or two!

Joseph Rodriguez was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He began studying photography at the School of Visual Arts and went on to receive an Associate of Applied Science at New York City Technical College. He worked in the graphic arts industry before deciding to pursue photography further. In 1985 he graduated with a Photojournalism and Documentary Diploma from the International Center of Photography in New York. He went on to work for Black Star photo agency, and print and online news organizations like National Geographic, The New York Times Magazine, Mother Jones, Newsweek, Esquire, Stern, and New America Media. He has received awards and grants from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Artists’ Fellowship, USC Annenberg Institute for Justice and Journalism, the Open Society Institute Justice Media Fellowship and Katrina Media Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, Mother Jones International Fund for Documentary Photography, and the Alicia Patterson Fellowship Fund for Investigative Journalism. He has been awarded Pictures of the Year by the National Press Photographers Association and the University of Missouri, in 1990, 1992, 1996 and 2002. He is the author of Spanish Harlem, part of the “American Scene” series, by the National Museum of American Art/ D.A.P., as well as East Side Stories: Gang Life in East Los Angeles, Juvenile, Flesh Life Sex in Mexico City, and Still Here: Stories After Katrina, Powerhouse Books. Recent exhibitions include the Hardhitta Gallery, Cologne, Germany; Irene Carlson Gallery of Photography, University of La Verne, California; Third Floor Gallery, Cardiff, Wales, UK Institute for Public Knowledge, New York, NY; Moving Walls, Open Society Institute, New York, NY; and Cultural Memory Matters, 601 Art Space, New York, NY.

The BAXTER ST at CCNY Conversations Series is made possible in part by generous support from public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.