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Affordable Housing in New York:
The People, Places, and Policies That Transformed a City

February 10 – May 28, 2016, Hunter East Harlem Gallery

A million and a half New Yorkers rent or own apartments developed under affordable-housing programs. The exhibition, Affordable Housing in New York: The People, Places, and Policies That Transformed a City, provides an unparalleled window into the reality of this vast system by bringing together architectural models, photography, and comprehensive historical material. The show is the in-gallery component to the recently published book of the same name by Matthew Gordon Lasner and Nicholas Dagen Bloom (Princeton University Press, 2016).

With original photographs by award-winning photographer and sociologist David Schalliol, large-scale interactive models of apartment interiors, an illustrated timeline, maps, and archival material. Also featuring contemporary photos taken by public housing residents through the acclaimed Project Lives program,  a New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) program that gave cameras and photography classes (led by nonprofit, Seeing for Ourselves) to hundreds of New York City housing project residents, and published the photographs in a Project Lives: New York Public Housing Residents Photograph Their World (powerHouse Books, 2015).

The exhibition, which also includes innovative ideas for the future of affordable housing by students from nine schools of architecture from around the world, accompanies the publication of Affordable Housing in New York: The People, Place, and Policies That Transformed a City, a landmark anthology of case studies and images documenting America’s largest and most successful affordable housing system. By focusing on the experience of living in New York City housing built for low- and middle-income families, the exhibition, curated by Matthew Gordon Lasner (Hunter College), Nicholas Dagen Bloom (NYIT), and Matthias Altwicker (NYIT), revisits the city’s singular housing achievement as inspiration for finding bold and creative solutions for tomorrow.
This project will be supplemented by a full schedule of interdisciplinary public programming including walking tours of the case study projects featured in the show, led by the curators with Hunter College. All programs are free and will be open to the public. For further details, visit