My mother is Belgian and throughout my childhood we entertained relatives when they came through New York. Not just my grandparents, my aunts and uncle, but cousins, friends, and friends of friends. My father was a native New Yorker and duly proud of it. He believed it was the best place in the world. Growing up I was also aware of how cool it was to see the city through the eyes of visitors. I couldn’t help but think about this recently as I poured over the pages of New York City Up and Down, a beautiful new book of photography by Jean-Pierre Laffont, a French photojournalist who arrive in New York in 1965 and fell in love on the spot. You want an evocative, personal look at New York during the good old bad days of New York in the ’60s into the ’80s, well, this is for you—a real treat.

New York City is fun, but it can make you cry. It is organized and chaotic, gritty and sophisticated, attractive and repulsive, loud and strangely quiet, cruel and tender, dirty and too clean. You like it one day, and hate it he rest of the week. It is forever changing, yet always stays the same. It is so beautiful it takes your breath away, yet ugliness is around the corner. ”—Eliane Laffont

Summer at Riverside Park, 1965
Brooklyn, 1971
Hair. Manhattan, 1969
Robin Williams and Mime, Manhattan, 1981
Manhattan, 1980

You can pick up New York City Up and Down, here.

[All Photos from New York City Up and Down by Jean-Pierre Laffont, copyright © 2017, published by Glitterati Incorporated.]