Thursday, January 10, 2013

Diane Arbus

"A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know."
Diane Arbus (1923-1971), U.S. photographer. Quoted in Patricia Bosworth, Diane Arbus: A Biography, Preface (1985).

Hello Friends,

Recently I have been working on a poem that Diane Arbus makes a cameo in. This inspired me to spend some time looking at her art work and reading a little more about what she was about.

My question of the day is................

do you agree with her statement, and if so, would this apply to your poetry as well?


  1. This is true of Arbus's photos. They definitely suggested far more questions than answers. When I saw her first exhibit at MOMA in 1971 (I think), I was freaked out for a month.

  2. More is less in poetry as in photography. The moment-by-moment sensual image is the brick-and-mortar of poetry -- not discourse, narrative, or polemic.

  3. The statement is true of everything ... the world seems blah but it's streaked through with weirdness. That was her contribution -- the idea that monsters lived behind the white fences.