From sex workers to stag parties, the Red Light District in Amsterdam certainly has a reputation. But what was the area like before us Brits descended on the area for debauchery-filled holidays? Amsterdam has undergone some significant changes over the past few years. The city has made an effort to “clean up” the Red Light District, leading many coffeeshops and brothels to close.
Photographer Huub Prickaerts lived in the famous/infamous Red Light District in the 1990s and photographed the cleaners, police, neighbours, criminals, tourists and sex workers who made up the diverse neighbourhood. As you can imagine, with so many NSFW activities going on, Prickaerts had to use stealth to take the photos without the subjects knowing they were being captured, adding to the carefree ‘fly on the wall’ feel of the work.
Huub Prickaerts photos of Amsterdam’s Red Light District are now collected in the book De Wallen, Foto’s 1993-1996, available from Uitgeverij Weesperzijde.
Photographer: Huub Prickaerts
Copyright: Huub Prickaerts