From museum exhibits to community murals to Oscar nominated documentaries to court-room disputes, Vivian Maier's Chicago street photography is certainly beloved and celebrated. (For those unfamiliar with her popular work, check out Vivian Maier for a sample.) While Maier's work is brilliant and there is no shortage of material available on her at the library, this post will focus on other photographers who took to the street to document our dynamic city.
Like his film work, Tom Palazzolo's photography focuses on the rough and colorful aspects of Chicago. His collection Tom Palazzolo's At Maxwell Street is a lively, beloved classic.
Only recently sharing his work with the world, Gary Stochl kept his work private for many decades. His book On City Streets is a forceful and assured collection of street photography.
Following are a few more photographers whose work is rarer to find in print and held only in our reference collection, but worth a look when you visit the Harold Washington Library Center and Woodson Regional Library.
While Barbara Crane's photography practice became more fine-arts oriented, Barbara Crane, Photographs 1948-1980 contains early work that focuses on Chicago beaches and streets.
Born in America and raised in Japan, Yasuhiro Ishimoto was relocated to Chicago after many years spent an World War II internment camp. Here he studied photography at the Institute of Design and created some of the work contained in Chicago, Chicago.
A longtime professor at Columbia College, Stephen Marc's book Urban Notions focuses heavily on Chicago's south side.
In addition to all these amazing artists who have been venerated and collected, here is a list of current photographers who are documenting the city in the here-and-now on Instagram: Alejandro, Ethan Chaparro, Khoa A. Dao, Gerri Fernandez, W.D. Floyd, Katherine Gorman, Nando Espinosa Herrera, Sean Hopkins, Bob Matter, ND1B, Michael Salisbury, and Kenautis Smith.
Do you have more recommendations? Put them in the comments below.