Parties: The Human Clay


Lee Friedlander

Lee Friedlander (b. 1934) is known for his candid portraits of people in their everyday environments. This volume in his Human Clay series of books highlights a lively collection of Friedlander’s photographs of celebrations—both public and private. From intimate gatherings to boisterous street parades, costume parties to black-tie affairs, Friedlander captures the spirit of these events and the ways in which they are commemorated. He documents surprisingly intimate moments—couples stealing a kiss, friends engaged in spirited conversation or laughing over drinks, guests lost in music on the dance floor. The images also feature a number of celebrities, including actors Ingrid Bergman and Sidney Poitier, enjoying the revelry at galas and parties, such as one at the famous Sardi’s restaurant in New York.


A fascinating document of party animals from yesteryear. —Mordecai Specktor, American Jewish World

“Parties” captures the wild laughter and blind intimacy that happens wherever sequins and vodka collide … Collectively, Friedlander’s photos give you the feeling that you were there. —Jes Zurell, Provokr