The Great Empty: Paris

The Great Empty

17 Aug 2020 Brooklyn
The Great Empty: Paris
Photo by Andrea Mantovani

LOCATION: Brooklyn Bridge Park – New Dock Street | Get Directions


The coronavirus has made scarcity a necessary condition of survival. Over the course of a few days in March, The Times sent out dozens of photographers around the world to capture images of once-bustling public plazas, beaches, fairgrounds, and more. The photographs tell a similar story: emptiness proliferates like the virus.

That emptiness, a public health necessity, can conjure up dystopia, but it also suggests that, by heeding the experts and staying apart, we have not lost the capacity to come together for the common good. These images are haunting, like stills from movies about plagues and the apocalypse, but in some ways they are hopeful.

They remind us that beauty requires human interaction.

Featuring:Matthew Abbott, Saiyna Bashir, Victor J. Blue, Philip Cheung, Woohae Cho, Adam Dean, Lam Yik Fei, Alessandro Grassani, Todd Heisler, Saumya Khandelwal, Andrea Mantovani, Victor Moriyama, Minzayar Oo, Rozette Rago, Andrew Testa, Laetitia Vancon

Curated by: Craig Allen, David Furst, Jeffrey Furticella, Morrigan McCarthy, Mikko Takkunen, Gaia Tripoli


Since 1851, The New York Times has been on the ground reporting stories from around the globe that no one else was telling. How we tell those stories has changed, but our mission to seek the truth and help people understand the world has remained constant.