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Every Person in New York Paperback – August 18, 2015
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"In 2008, Jason Polan set himself the challenge of drawing every person in New York. Like Sufjan Stevens's aim to make 50 albums of the United States, it was essentially an impossible project, but what's come out of it is undoubtedly a success. The artist and Cut collaborator has drawn an impressive 36,000-plus people to date, and those sketches are all compiled in Every Person in New York, along with a foreword by Kristen Wiig. It's out on August 18, with a key addendum to its title: Volume 1.Thumb through a copy to find sketches and scrawled captions of New Yorkers waiting in line, subway riders, famous faces, and, if you've been to New York City in the last seven years, maybe even yourself." - New York magazine
"In 2008, illustrator Jason Polan set out to capture the enormous human poetics compressed in Gotham's geographic smallness by drawing every person in the city. The first seven years of this ongoing project, totaling drawings of 30,000 people, are now collected in Every Person in New York - a marvelous tome of Polan's black-and-white line drawings, colored in with the intense aliveness of a city where, as E.B. White wrote more than half a century earlier, 'wonderful events are taking place every minute.' What emerges is a kind of poetry - fragmentary glimpses of ideas and images, commanded by an internal rhythm to paint a complete whole of this human hive." - Brain Pickings
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Polan's drawings are of people passing by on a street corner, or in a museum or of people sitting someplace eating lunch, etc, etc. The sketches have captions of the date, or the place drawn, and sometimes what the people are doing to help you envision the people that he has drawn. He also drew several celebrities that he has seen around the city. The length of his time that he has to view each person impacts his drawing. A person he draws waiting for a train may result in a rushed, simple drawing because he only sees them for a few minutes before they move on. But, the hurried nature of the sketch illustrates well the brief amount of time in which he sees that person before they hop on the train. I.e., the brevity of the drawing itself signifies the rushed nature of the encounters we have as New Yorkers who are in constant motion, commuting from one place to the next location.
In contrast, a person sitting at a coffee shop on a laptop may be drawn much more intricately because Polan has time to focus on smaller details of the person, and can therefore make the drawing more elaborate. Also, drawings of people seen on a street corner may be messy and overlapping each other which perfectly illustrates the hurried manner in which people weave into each other in constant motion while walking in crowds through the streets of NY.Read more ›
|Length: 2:06 Mins|
Every Person in New York is a 408-page paperback book that features the sketches of all the people he has drawn so far. There are over 30,000 thousand people in this book. That's why this book is so thick. And I'm quite amazed he actually kept count.
Polan is an artist who lives in New York. Over the last 7 years, he has been sketching New Yorkers whenever and wherever he can. He has drawn at cafes, outside the New York Public Library, the many museums, Apple stores, on the train, at tennis matches, markets, parks, etc. You get the idea.
It's interesting to see the diversity of the people captured in the sketches. There are people sleeping on the trains, marathon runners, dog walkers, lots of pedestrians and even celebrities. Every page is filled with line art ink sketches of people. Some are just simple silhouettes while others have their facial features more fleshed out. The line art is loose and many are like contour drawings. Sometimes, even the bump while the train is moving is recorded in the sketch.
Generally speaking, the style is that of simplicity and because of that this may not be the book for those who are looking for detailed drawings. Because of that, this is a book you can flip through quickly.
This is a fun sketchbook.
(See more pictures of the book on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.Read more ›
This book is overflowing with sketches. The sheer volume of drawings is unbelievable, and the variety is terrific. These illustrations range from detailed portraits to just a few descriptive (and occasionally not so descriptive) lines to entire scenes. There are tons of celebrities (some who apparently obliged Polan with an autograph) and countless ordinary folks, all going about their day. Apparently there are over 30,000 drawings in this book, but there are probably more than that in Polan's full illustration of the stadium at a Mets game alone. There's also casual but attentive-to-detail documentation to go along with much of the book in the form of hand-written notes about these subjects, including dates and sometimes background information that enriches the whole experience. Paging through this book feels a lot like sitting next to the artist while he's capturing the moment. It's really something special. The book design is elegant and beautiful and perfectly matched to Polan's particular style. It's simple and free of frills, but also very thoughtful at the same time.
I own a lot of art books, and this is unlike anything else in my collection. This is a life drawing book, but don't expect photorealism. It would be impossible to capture what Polan has achieved here without a quick, expressive style. You never know how long that man is going to remain asleep on the F train, or how long it's going to take that woman to eat her burrito at Taco Bell. But there is an undeniable sense of environment and humanity in these pages. And hey, where else can you find a book that you might actually be in? Buy it and have a look for yourself.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
a wonderful testament to the city with the most diverse and eclectic population on earth..extremely entertaining !Published 6 months ago by souz72
I've shared it with my artist friends and we've been using his style for quick sketches.Published 6 months ago by Jennifer Mariacher
Every person in New York makes me love living in New York even though sometimes living in New York makes me hate living in New York.Published 6 months ago by Peter Meehan
I love this book and thinking about each persons story. I get lost in it for hours!Published 7 months ago by JaimeBZ
I really enjoyed Jason's book, and look forward to future ones as well!Published 8 months ago by Jesse N. Polan