American photographer Scot Sothern (1949) looks head-on at the seedy world of prostitutes working the streets of Los Angeles in his series Lowlife. Originally shot over the period 1985-1991, the series of black and white images are currently on view at Daniel Cooney Fine Art in New York City (Jan 8 - Feb 28, 2015).
Sothern met the sex workers in Los Angeles, in streets like Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Strip and in downtown LA. He approached the women not only as a photographer but as a customer, pulling the women into personal encounters that are documented in a series of plain and raw images. The images are striking in their bald representation of women as sexual objects, confronting our expectations as viewers that we should be able to see them as human beings.
Sothern has continued his photographic works with prostitutes over many years, later transitioning into the colour images recorded as A New Low, which we also featured as an online portfolio with GUP, along with an interview.