To create his series “Heads,” Philip-Lorca diCorcia marked an X on the sidewalk in New York’s Times Square and waited at a distance with a long lens. When someone stepped on the X, he took a picture, and the camera shutter remotely triggered a strobe flash mounted on a nearby pole that blacked out almost all of the surrounding detail. People who appear together in the images most likely did not know each other. Here, the man in the suit stepped on the X; the younger man was simply walking close enough to be partially lit as well. Although the subjects of the “Heads” series are diverse, reflecting New York’s population, they have something in common in their facial expressions, which seem thoughtful and closed in, perhaps in an attempt to create a psychological space in a place where they have little physical space.
Label from Looking Out and Looking In: A Selection of Contemporary Photography, January 19–June 9, 2013