side walk 6′ apart in New York City @ New-York Historical Society Museum



presents a solo exhibition of 32 photographs by Renate Aller

Renate Aller, Artist with Baby Boy aka Dan Frieber, 2020,  archival pigment print

side walk 6′ Apart in New York City

March 10th – August 7th, 2022

Special thanks to Jennifer Nettles, Mihail Lari and Scott Murray, Michele and Steven Pesner and Peace.

A set of prints from the side walk 6′ apart in NYC project have been added to the permanent collection as part of New-York Historical’s efforts to document the effects of COVID-19 on New Yorkers as well as artistic responses to the pandemic. 

New-York Historical Society 170 Central Park West (77th Street) New York, NY 10024

In April 2020, at the height of the onset of the pandemic in New York City, photographer Renate Aller began inviting one friend at a time to join her on the sidewalk in front of her building in Soho, where she set up a camera to chronicle the coming together. It was the first time in weeks that many of them had encountered others in the outside world. Aller and her friends never touched, but together, they created an emotional landscape of those early months of uncertainty. The photos on display in side walk 6′ apart in New York City capture a time when fear and anxiety conflicted with the overwhelming urge to connect.

Born in Germany, Renate Aller lives and works in New York. Her work is in the collections of corporate institutions, private collectors, and museums, including the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Yale University Art Gallery, CT; and Musée des beaux-arts Le Locle, Switzerland, among others.

A set of prints from the side walk project have been added to the permanent collection as part of New-York Historical’s efforts to document the effects of COVID-19 on New Yorkers as well as artistic responses to the pandemic. 

The exhibition is curated by Marilyn Satin Kushner, curator of prints, photographs, and architectural collections at New-York Historical. 

Support is generously provided by Jennifer nettles in honor of Jerry Oppenheimer; Mihail Lari and Scott Murray; and by Michele and Steve Pesner and Peace.




A conversation between artist Renate Aller and curator Marilyn S. Kushner.

Why wear the same black outfit in every photo? filmed by Way Zen

you tube video by Way Zen, produced during a talk at the New York Historical Society Museum & Library arranged by Arezoo Moseni, Senior Art Librarian NYPL


This project is in the spirit of
Rainer Maria Rilke:
“… that each should stand guard over the solitude of the other”

As a reaction to people’s lives in solitude … For most of April and May 2020, I created this photo project by hosting friends and neighbors on our sidewalk or visiting them in their street, from a safe 6-foot distance, with face masks, the camera in self timer mode recording these encounters.

I would like to thank my husband Hugh and each of the collaborators who made our encounters special and meaningful. These sidewalk visits gave us a deep sense of community where community had been forced apart.

A set of prints from the “side walk 6′ apart in NYC” project have been added to the permanent collection as part of New-York Historical’s efforts to document the effects of COVID-19 on New Yorkers as well as artistic responses to the pandemic.


side walk 6′ apart in New York City photo book published by Kehrer Verlag
ISBN: 978-3-96900-032-8

with texts by Marilyn Kushner, Curator and Head, Department of Prints, Photographs and Architectural Collections at New-York Historical Society Museum Lara Pan, independent curator and writer

In the USA signed copies available via Photo-Eye Books and the NYHS Museum Store


Born in Germany, Renate Aller lives and works in New York. “The Space Between Memory and Expectation” and “side walk 6′ apart in NYC” are her most recent books, both published by Kehrer Verlag, Germany Fall 2021. “Mountain Interval” and the artist’s previous projects “Ocean and Desert”“dicotyledon” (published by Radius Books of Santa Fe) and the long term project “Oceanscapes – One View – Ten Years” (co published by Kehrer Verlag and Radius Books) support the artist’s investigation into the relationship between Romanticism, memory and landscape – in the context of our current socio-political awareness.

Her works are in the collections of corporate institutions, private collectors and museums, including Lannan Foundation, Santa Fe, N.M., National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Yale University Art Gallery, CT, George Eastman House, Rochester, NY, New Britain Museum of American Art, CT, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany, Chazen Museum of Art, Madison, WI, Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, NY, , Musée des Beaux-Arts, Le Locle, Switzerland and New-York Historical Society Museum, New York, NY Where a solo exhibition with “side walk 6′ apart in NYC” will be held in March – August 7th, 2022.

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