'Fascinating... a compelling biography... valuable in its insights into the cultural history of the 50s and 60s as well as its understanding of the special place Arbus occupies in it.' Washington Post Book World
Diane Arbus's startling photographic images of dwarfs, twins, transvestites, and freaks seemed from the first to redefine both the normal and the abnormal in our lives; they were already becoming part of the iconography of the age when Arbus committed suicide in 1971.
Arbus herself remained an enigma until the publication of this first full biography. Patricia Bosworth examines the life behind the eerie, mesmerizing photographs: Diane's pampered childhood; her passionate marriage to Allan Arbus and their work together as fashion photographers during the fifties; the emotional upheaval surrounding the end of that marriage; and the radically dark, liberating, and ultimately tragic turn Diane's art took during the sixties. Bosworth's engrossing book is a compassionate portrait of the woman behind some of the most powerful photographs of our time.
“'A biography that seems to have more than enough material for several art legends. Patricia Bosworth has created a spellbinding portrait' New York ”
“'Sensitive...detailed...balanced' New York Times ”
“'An excellent biography' TLS ”
“'A biography that seems to have more than enough material for several art legends. Patricia Bosworth has created a spellbinding portrait' New York Magazine ”
“'A spirited biography' Time ”
“'A masterly biography-A powerful and moving books about a life riddled with despair and yet redeemed by art' Newsday 'A masterly biography-A powerful and moving books about a life riddled with despair and yet redeemed by art' Newsday ”
“'Patricia Bosworth does justice both to Arbus's fascinating singularity and to the emblematic nature of her fate; her book would hold even someone who had never seen an Arbus photograph. Bosworth writes conscientiously, with restraint and self-effacement' Listener ”