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Thread: Diane Arbus

  1. #11
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Grenier
    Next, I'm hoping for Dustin Hoffman to play Edward Weston.
    With Renee Zellweger as Charis Wilson ...

  2. #12
    djklmnop's Avatar
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    Nicole Kidman is too "glamour glamour goodie tissue" to play Diane Arbus. I would expect someone more gritty. Charlize Theron did a great job with Monster. I bet she would be awesome for this role!
    Money is not the problem. The problem is, I don't have any.

  3. #13

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    Diane Arbus came from a wealthy family. I wonder why she apparently always had severe financial problems.

  4. #14
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Mitchell
    Diane Arbus came from a wealthy family. I wonder why she apparently always had severe financial problems.
    Good point Bill. Maybe all was not rosy in Camelot.

    Please excuse my skepticism, but I'm one that never really thought that much of what she did. There's a good thread going right now on the LF Forum on photgraphic exploitation that touches on Arbus. IMO, she was highly exploitive of her subjects. What would she have been without the wealthy family and social connections? What was her motivation? To take photos of people her friends wouldn't even acknowledge existed and sell them as art? I wonder if the movie will explore those questions?

    By the way, anyone remember the story behind her suicide? I don't and would be interested in hearing it.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
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  5. #15
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    Me too. I never really 'got' her work. I didn't like looking at her images and I don't think that takes talent. A lot of people take pictures that I don't like to look at<g>.
    Her and Robert Adams and Lee Friedlander and some of those other guys. Just don't get it.

    I think Dustin Hoffman can only play himself, just like Al Pacino. I'd like to see John Malkovich play EW. Diane Keaton as CW? Or Susan Sarandon for the nudes!

    -Mike

  6. #16
    donbga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Hawley
    Good point Bill. Maybe all was not rosy in Camelot.

    Please excuse my skepticism, but I'm one that never really thought that much of what she did. There's a good thread going right now on the LF Forum on photgraphic exploitation that touches on Arbus. IMO, she was highly exploitive of her subjects. What would she have been without the wealthy family and social connections? What was her motivation? To take photos of people her friends wouldn't even acknowledge existed and sell them as art? I wonder if the movie will explore those questions?

    By the way, anyone remember the story behind her suicide? I don't and would be interested in hearing it.
    You guys need to read her bio to answer these questions. Also there was an excellent article about her in the New York Times a good while back that covered many of the questions you have asked.

    Diane had high regard and empathy for her subjects and never regarded her photographs to be lurid or explotive. She took the time to point her camera at individuals that are often disregarded or over looked by society and photographers which showed a unique insight into their lives as well as our own.

    What a photographer photographs tells us as much about the subject as it does about the photographer. What we see in photographs and how we react to them tell us much about ourselves. Arbus wasn't attempting to chronicle a collection of freaks or misfits. The fact that many of her photographs give us pause and make us a bit uncomfortable is a tribute to her personal vision and her sympathy with her subjects.

    Susan Sontag wrote about Arbus' work in her book 'On Photography.' If you have not read it yet, it is worth reading not only to read about Diane's work but other photographers such as August Sander and Walker Evans. Two photographers that can also be accused of explotation of their subjects, though in reality that wasn't their aim at all.

    What I find also interesting is the fact that she only used a TLR (a Rollei perhaps.) With it she had the freedom to manage her images and engage herself and the viewer with her subjects. Not having to manage equipment was a big plus in this regard. A result of this approach is that the prescence of the photographer is felt but not in an overt obvious way.

    Don Bryant

  7. #17
    Robert Brummitt's Avatar
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    I'm not against Diane's work. I'm just so shocked by the big (Really big)publicity push going on? I was watching the CBS Sunday Morning program and they had a piece about Diane Arbus. It's like everywhere, I turn another Arbus article ad. It's a well organized campaign. Its covered the newsprint, the airwaves and other public communications.
    What bothers me is the selling or Blasting into the pubilc of psyche. The hard sell always turns me off.
    "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit"
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  8. #18
    bjorke's Avatar
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    Arbus used a Mamiya most of the time, along with a Nikon F. She carried a flash gun. Later she borrowed a Pentax 6x7 from Hiro and her anxiety about buying one was apparently prominent during her last few months. She and Alan did magazine work from the 1940's on, so I'm sure she was at least familiar with a lot of various gear. She was friends with Avedon, Marvin Israel of course, Lisette Model,others -- the core of the NYC photo scene at the time. And Walker Evans sent her work, and she adored Sanders.

    People who complain about her being exploitative have usually, in my experience, seen only a half-dozen prints or less of her work, upon which they base this allegation. But Arbus was not exploiting people -- and unlike the viewer of the photograph, she was there with them, immediate and engaged. My own impression is that she was the super master of photographer-subject connection. There are dozens of stories about it.

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  9. #19
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    Those that are interested, I suggest Revelations. It's a big ass book that has a bunch of photos and biographical information about Arbus. One of the really neat things is that it also includes sketches, contact sheets, and polaroids.
    Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!

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  10. #20
    James Bleifus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Moore
    Those that are interested, I suggest Revelations. It's a big ass book that has a bunch of photos and biographical information about Arbus.
    And it's affordable for it's size.

    Cheers,

    James

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