Introduction by Robert Campbell. Princeton Architectural Press, New York 2012 Dominique Carré éditeur / Editions La Découverte, Paris 2012
Pilot and photographer Alex MacLean has flown his plane over large areas of the United States, documenting the landscape from beautiful agricultural patterns to geometric city grids. In his new book, he directs his lens at the rooftops of New York City, showing the great complexity and life of the roofs of New York’s buildings. Depicting not only the city’s famous water towers, but pools, tennis courts, gardens, sunbathers, art, and restaurants up in the air, MacLean’s powerful images give readers a glimpse of a part of the city that usually remains hidden. His photographs leave little doubt about New York City’s “green” potential and the belief that improved outdoor spaces above lead to more livable cities below. Maps and captions help the reader to easily locate the photographs, and an essay by Robert Campbell puts MacLean’s work into context. Whether you are new to the city native born, this fascinating look at hidden New York will be a revelation.