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Larry Fink
(American, b. 1941)
Teen Couple - Allentown Fair, 1977 (printed 1980)
Gelatin silver print, edition 69/75, 14 1/2” x 14 1/2”
Gift of Sylvia Fink Kleinman (85.004.003)

As a documentary photographer, Larry Fink is known for his compassionate and psychologically penetrating images of ordinary Americans.  Focusing on family and community rituals, Fink explores individual emotional states as well as human interaction.  A good example is Teen Couple, Allentown Fair, taken in Allentown, Pennsylvania, in 1978.  Pausing to embrace each other, two teens declare their close relationship in the midst of the crowded midway.  At the same time, however, each seems lost in his or her own private world.  Evoking the peculiar trials and joys inherent in being a teenager, Teen Couple is an authentic, yet deeply sympathetic image of American adolescence.

A native of Brooklyn, New York, Fink studied at the New School for Social Research and with photographers Alexey Brodovitch and Lisette Model.  He spent many years photographing society events in New York City before moving to Martin’s Creek, Pennsylvania, where he began to focus on the lives of rural Pennsylvanians.  Fink has taught extensively, and has served as instructor at the Yale School of Fine Arts, the Parsons School of Design, the Cooper Union, and most recently at Bard College.  His work has been widely exhibited, and has been featured in one-person shows at the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art among many others.