James Panero writes about Light Work Resident Meryl Meisler and her photography for the 2020 edition of the Light Work Annual, Contact Sheet 207:
I owe Meryl Meisler an apology. A few years ago, I asked Meryl to help me document the arts and culture of Bushwick, Brooklyn. As an art critic, I was on the Bushwick beat. Meryl, meanwhile, was the original Bushwick beatnik, the street photographer of 1970s New York who brought her camera to work when she took her job in 1981 as an arts teacher at Bushwick’s I.S. 291. The Bronx was burning, and Bushwick had burned, blocks of it at a time, leaving her school-age families to live and love among the ruins. Meryl set out to tell their sides of the story. She has been photographing Bushwick ever since.