The story: Vivian Maier was a Chicago nanny whose masterful street photography appeared only after her death. Some 100,000 negatives were purchased by Chicago realtor John Maloof.
Behind the story: When this first aired on Chicago Tonight back in December, someone posted it on YouTube to show a friend. Within days, it had gone viral. As of this writing, just two months later, it has been viewed more than 300,000 times on YouTube and another 185,000 times on the Chicago Tonight page! And, for awhile, you could search for Vivian Maier on Twitter and see new tweets every few minutes. (just checked: three tweets in the last hour). I was getting emails from old friends I hadn’t seen in years who had been sent the link.
The other thing that has happened is that John Maloof has started to hear from a few people who knew her, including an Evanston woman I had just profiled weeks earlier on Chicago Tonight!
The best way to find out more about Vivian Maier is to visit John Maloof’s Vivian Maier blog, which includes new photos all the time. Another collector, Jeff Goldstein, owns (only!) 10,000 of her negatives. His website his here. And, if you are in Chicago, be sure to get to the Chicago Cultural for a Vivian Maier exhibit, thru April 3rd.
And now I hear there will be an exhibit at the Russell Bowman Art Advisory opening April 15. This will be drawn from Jeff Goldstein’s collection.