“Chrissy, Manhattan, New York”

I had the strange but wonderful pleasure of meeting Chrissy while taking a stroll on Manhattan’s Lower West Side. At the time of our first encounter, I was creating photographs of city landscapes. Chrissy greeted me in a snarling, defensive manner, with a crude “Hello.”
In the weeks to follow, I made repeated attempts to get into her good graces, and eventually I did, becoming one of the very few persons whom she would allow to photograph and videotape on a very intimate level. My relationship with Chrissy, although difficult at times, bore a pleasant fruit. Despite her severe mental illness, our friendship blossomed into a trusting and understanding relationship. Sadly, we have lost contact for a while, but Chrissy has been spotted still living on the streets. Here she is play-acting as a fortune teller. (Photo and text by Donato DiCamillo)

Donato DiCamillo

Donato DiCamillo was born the lone son of three siblings from Italian immigrant parents in Brooklyn, New York. He suffered behavioral problems as a child, moving in and out of behavioral institutions and jails after being expelled from school at age 16. He taught himself photography after serving a federal prison sentence in Virginia. He first photographed bugs, plants, and anything else within 120 feet of his domicile, as restricted under an order of home confinement. His work currently focuses on people and has since been featured in multiple publications and news sources around the world, including BBC, The Washington Post, CBC, and Huffington Post. His first collection slated for publication in late 2018. He currently resides in Staten Island. DiCamillo’s work may be found on Instagram, and at his website-in-progress at donatodicamillo.com