The Photography of Diane Arbus

Discussion in 'Photographers' started by Ken Nadvornick, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,045
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Location:
    Monroe, WA, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
  2. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

    Messages:
    2,266
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Location:
    Metro DC are
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks Ken,
    always a trip to look at many of those.
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

    Messages:
    6,930
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond VA.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks also. I enjoy those pictures.

    Jeff
     
  4. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

    Messages:
    2,129
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Location:
    NYC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have always enjoyed her work, its always so easy to get hung up on a picture for a few minutes examining the details in each one, and wondering about those people and their lives at that point in time. There web images dont do her work justice though, anyone remotely interested should grab a book or try to find a museum that have some prints hanging.
     
  5. Trask

    Trask Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,365
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    I know it's dweebish thing to ask, but what camera(s) did she use most frequently? Some look like them might be made with a Rollei, while others look more wide-angle than a 75mm or 80mm lens would give (yet less than what a Rollei Wide would render). Yet others look like a short telephoto might have been used. Hassie? What? Seems to me she'd want something relatively quiet for some of these.
     
  6. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,530
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    She mainly used a Mamiya C TLR. https://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=...15153.0.16893.20.14.0.6.0.0.121.926.11j3.14.0 and the interchangable telephoto and wide angle lenses probably ther 65mm and the 135mm.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 12, 2013
  7. Trask

    Trask Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,365
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Huh -- hadn't thought of the Mamiya TLRs, despite having owned one and several lens years ago. Nice cameras, very heavy, very versatile.
     
  8. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,530
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Agreed, you get a truss for your hernia with every one you buy :smile: , I have two (cameras, I hasten to add,not hernias) and I still use them regularly.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 12, 2013
  9. batwister

    batwister Member

    Messages:
    919
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Intense photographs.
     
  10. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

    Messages:
    2,266
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Location:
    Metro DC are
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I read a bio once and always thought the underground darkroom in NYC would be a trip to check out.
     
  11. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,979
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Location:
    Northern Vir
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've always admired the directness, and lack of judgement, in her photographs.

    ** A bit of trivia for those old enough to remember the TV show M*A*S*H- she was married to the actor that played Dr. Sidney Freedman (Allan Arbus), for over 25 years. **
     
  12. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,045
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Location:
    Monroe, WA, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The psychiatrist on M*A*S*H was Diane Arbus' husband?

    Damn Eddie. You're my new hero.

    I just LOVE meaningless trivia. And those who happen to possess it. Life just doesn't get any better than to know things like this.

    You have done Holy work here. Henceforth I shall speak in whispers and avert my eyes in Your presence. And with guilt bask in Your reflected Glory.

    Ken

    (Looking down at his shoes as he types this...)
     
  13. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

    Messages:
    16,804
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    Delta, BC, Canada
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    And before he was an actor, he was a photographer - he and Diane Arbus owned a photographic business together.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. batwister

    batwister Member

    Messages:
    919
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Crazy that he was in M*A*S*H. I just wonder how he felt about the theme tune...
     
  16. h.v.

    h.v. Member

    Messages:
    186
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Location:
    Alberta, Can
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks for posting that link. It gave me an opportunity to look over Arbus' work, 'cause in the past I never really "got" the appeal and just didn't find her photos worth the praise. But I'm warming up to them, there really are some great shots in that 48 photo spread.
     
  17. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,045
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Location:
    Monroe, WA, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've always felt that the appeal, at least for me, is that there is a tiny—or maybe not so tiny—bit of each of us in those photographs. An uncomfortable familiarity that you can't quite put your finger on. Nor do you even really want to. But you look anyway because something out in all that darkness rings ever so slightly true.

    You may not have actually been there and done that. But at some uncomfortable point in your life you may not have been all that far away either.

    Ken
     
  18. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,530
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    It was reported on a hoax posting on Facebook recently by someone who is beneath contempt that Allan Arbus had died this year aged 95 , because although Mr. Arbus is 95, he is still alive and well.
     
  19. Dali

    Dali Subscriber

    Messages:
    725
    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Very true! Arbus pictures are not spectacular and look somewhat familiar even if they show a part of human being we don't want to see. For me, her pictures are less immediatly appealing but much more interesting in the long run than 99% of what I see.

    Take care.
     
  20. Ghostman

    Ghostman Subscriber

    Messages:
    504
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Location:
    Switzerland
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I thought she mainly used a Nikon 35mm and a Rolleiflex.

    I think she may be my current favourite. I am currently reading through the Taschen book on Arbus. What I find equally interesting and stimulating is her writing. She wrote heaps of letters about her projects and she religiously kept journals. She was clever, witty and extremely insightful. She was a wonderful writer and photographer. Her passion and enthusiasm are infectious and her humility and modesty both charming and endearing.

    If I were to have a dinner and could invite 10 of my favourite current or historical characters, Arbus would be there.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2014
  21. Louis Nargi

    Louis Nargi Member

    Messages:
    201
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Thank you
     
  22. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,211
    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Florida
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    weebish,because you know it is irrelevant,right?:D
     
  23. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,045
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Location:
    Monroe, WA, USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I just finished the Patricia Bosworth (Diane Arbus: A Biography) and William Todd Schultz (An Emergency in Slow Motion) books. In that order, it's a prerequisite.

    The camera equipment she just happened to pick up on any given day could not have been further from relevant to what was apparently going on inside her, and the photographs that resulted.

    If you think you understand after only viewing her pictures, you need to read these two books, and maybe the second one twice, then perhaps rethink.

    Ken
     
  24. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,943
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    It should be noted that Allan Arbus died on April 19, 2013, about 5 weeks after this post.
     
  25. thomnola

    thomnola Member

    Messages:
    35
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    Location:
    New Orleans,
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
  26. winger

    winger Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,898
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    southwest PA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Have you read Revelations? http://www.amazon.com/Diane-Arbus-R...8&sr=8-1&keywords=book+diane+arbus+revelation That's the only Arbus book I have and I thought it was a fairly thorough look at her life and photography.