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Diane Arbus

Super controversial, hotly debated, widely praised and criticized, Diane Arbus' work can never be described as boring.

Diane Arbus is known for taking extremely raw photographs making "freaks look normal and the normal look like freaks". This post isn't going to be an in depth examination of her body of work- a good example can be found here (at which point I warn you, there is a lot of nudity and uncomfortable subject matter for some people). Instead, let's focus on two themes in her work: kids and twins. One of her most famous shots is a perfect combination of both.

Instead of giving my own analysis of why her work is fascinating, I'd like to present the shots with a few of her quotes and let you decide if she's your cup of tea.

“A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know.”

"I grew up feeling immune and exempt from circumstance. One of the things I suffered from was that I never felt adversity. I was confirmed in a sense of unreality."

"Most people go through life dreading they'll have a traumatic experience. Freaks were born with their trauma. They've already passed their test in life. They're aristocrats."

"I really believe there are things nobody would see if I didn't photograph them."

"They made me feel a mixture of shame and awe. There's a quality of legend about freaks. Like a person in a fairy tale who stops you and demands that you answer a riddle"

"Regardless of how you feel inside, always try to look like a winner. Even if you are behind, a sustained look of control and confidence can give you a mental edge that results in victory."

"I never have taken a picture I've intended. They're always better or worse."

Love baby anderson cooper. And, off theme, love her shot of Mae West in bed with a monkey.

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