David Armstrong used to hang out with New York's downtown famous before AIDS came and ruined everything.
Ever wondered what it was like to hang out in downtown New York back in the carefree days before AIDS knocked on the door like an angry neighbor and ruined the party? David Armstrong was a regular at the Mudd Club in the late 70s, where he partied with Jean-Michel Basquiat, Rene Ricard, John Waters, Steven Meisel, and lots of other people who ended up more or less shaping the way we dress, look at art, watch films, and listen to music. More importantly, he brought his camera to the party.
Thanks to our buddy Aron at Mörel Books, who came across an image Armstrong shot in the late 70s and guessed he had a whole archive of them stashed away somewhere, the photographer is finally sharing the moments he captured, in the book Night and Day. At first, it was intended to be a little booklet of around 40 pages, but every time Aron went to David’s house he found more boxes of previously unseen Kodachromes. It’s now a 144-page, case-bound monster of a book. What is more, Aron also managed to track down poet and painter Rene Ricard at the Chelsea Hotel, who graciously leant his handwriting to the book cover.
If you want to get your hands on a signed copy, pop by Dashwood Books tonight if you’re in New York, Colette on June 30 if you’re in Paris, and Donlon Books on July 7 if you’re in London. If you don’t live in a cool city, visit morelbooks.com. Or just eye up some of David’s photos of pretty boys and girls below to get a taste of what you're missing out on.
To launch the gallery click on any of the thumbnails below.