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Take A Closer Look At NYC's Beautiful, Ubiquitous Fire Escapes

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Welcome to All in the Details, a semi-regular series in which New York city photographers offer us glimpses of little-noticed, under-appreciated architectural elements that appear on buildings across the city. Have an idea for a future installment? Send it to the tipline, please.

A photographer who has documented countless little nuances of city architecture, Bob Estremera now turns his lens to that most quintessential of features: the fire escape. He traversed midtown and downtown Manhattan, concentrating on the prewars of Greenwich VIllage and the Lower East Side, shooting exclusively in black-and-white to make the lines and angles really stand out. More than just photogenic, these required-by-law steel safety features have become so much more, serving functions from mini urban gardens to smoking patios. Above all, they are, as one author put it, "visual knockouts." See for yourself.

· Bob Estremera Photography [official]
· All In The Details: Uncovering The Many Hidden Faces Of New York City's Facades [Curbed]
· Sepia Tones archive [Curbed]