Diane Arbus (1923–1971) is one of the most original and influential photographers of the twentieth century. She studied photography with Berenice Abbott, Alexey Brodovitch, and Lisette Model and had her first published photographs appear in Esquire in 1960. In 1963 and 1966 she was awarded John Simon Guggenheim Fellowships and was one of three photographers whose work was the focus of New Documents, John Szarkowski's landmark exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art in 1967. Arbus's depictions of couples, children, female impersonators, nudists, New York City pedestrians, suburban families, circus performers, and celebrities, among others, span the breadth of the postwar American social sphere and constitute a diverse and singularly compelling portrait of humanity.Read More
A year after her death, her work was selected for inclusion in the Venice Biennale, the first time any photographer had been so honored. The Museum of Modern Art hosted a major retrospective that traveled throughout the United States and Canada from 1972 to 1975. A larger full scale retrospective, Diane Arbus Revelations, was organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 2003 and traveled to museums in the United States and Europe through 2006. A major European retrospective of Arbus's work opened at the Jeu de Paume, Paris in October 2011 and traveled to Winterthur, Berlin, and Amsterdam through 2013. In 2016, The Met Breuer hosted in the beginning, a landmark exhibition of Arbus's work focusing on never-before-seen early photographs from the first seven years of her career, from 1956–1962, scheduled to open at its fourth venue, the Hayward Gallery, London, in February 2019. Most recently, the Smithsonian American Art Museum hosted Diane Arbus: A box of ten photographs, an exhibition tracing the history of the portfolio that established the foundation for Arbus's posthumous career, ushering in photography's acceptance to the realm of "serious" art.
In 2007, The Metropolitan Museum of Art acquired the artist's complete archive from the Estate of Diane Arbus. The collection includes hundreds of early and unique photographs by Arbus, negatives and contact prints of 7,500 rolls of film, glassine print sleeves annotated by the artist, as well as her photography collection, library, and personal papers including appointment books, notebooks, correspondence, writings, and ephemera.
Eight publications examine the artist's work: Diane Arbus (Aperture, 1972); Magazine Work (1984); Untitled (1995); Diane Arbus Revelations (2003); Diane Arbus: A Chronology (2011); Silent Dialogues: Diane Arbus & Howard Nemerov (2015); in the beginning (2016); and Diane Arbus: A box of ten photographs (2018).
Arbus's photographs can be found in the collections of numerous institutions around the world, including Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada; Art Institute of Chicago; Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; Fotomuseum, Winterthur; J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris; National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo; National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Tate Gallery, London; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Text courtesy Fraenkel Gallery.
Find out what's happening in New York beyond The Armory Show, which returns to New York from 9 to 12 September 2021.
At Maureen Paley in London, photographs by Peter Hujar capture New York City's nocturnal drag scene between 1970 and 1987.
In 1962, documentary photographer Diane Arbus switched from using a 35mm camera to a medium-format Rolleiflex, which offered higher resolution images in a distinctive square format. This equipment cha
'I do feel I have some slight corner on something about the quality of things. I mean, it’s very subtle and a little embarrassing to me, but I believe there are things which nobody would see unless I photographed them.' —Diane Arbus
The Female Gaze, Part II: Women Looking at Men, a group show that runs at Cheim & Read through September 2, is as ambitious in scope as it is in ideology, showcasing work by a wide range of artists–including Tracey Emin, Alice Neel, Diane Arbus, and Jenny Holzer–who have applied a nontraditional lens to viewing and depicting...
diane arbus: in the beginning showcases a city explored within the years of 1956 and 1962. Framed images of a hauntingly provocative nature are displayed singularly on thin paneled walls. The work highlighted has never been seen before from photographer, and offer a telling glimpse of her budding career.
Unfolding across all three floors of Hauser & Wirth New York, 22 nd Street, A Luta Continua is the first United States presentation of the Sylvio Perlstein Collection. Curated by David Rosenberg, t