Comments/Context: Wijnanda Deroo's images of New York restaurants are a short-hand catalog of the diversity of this great city: its traditions and routines, its ethnicities and neighborhoods, its celebrations and memories. Her quiet, unpeopled interiors capture the essence of the dining experience at each individual place, from table settings and surrounding decorations, to exuberant colors or muted light, running the gamut from down-and-dirty to over-the-top extravagant.
When taken as a series, the works provide a historical (sometimes almost nostalgic) snapshot of the nature of dining in New York; as restaurants age and mature, or come and go, they reflect the aspirations, moods, and tastes of those they serve. Deroo's formal compositions etch these quintessential places in memory, removing the cacophony of the babbling customers, leaving behind silent, studied environments and surfaces, each patiently waiting for its next jolt of life.
Rating: * (one star) GOOD (rating system described here)