Skip to main content

Diane Arbus

Diane Arbus
Usage Conditions Apply
Garry Winogrand, 14 Jan 1928 - 19 Mar 1984
Diane Arbus, 14 Jul 1923 - 26 Jul 1971
1969 (printed 1983)
Gelatin silver print
Image: 31.4 × 47.2 cm (12 3/8 × 18 9/16")
Sheet: 40.7 × 50.8 cm (16 × 20")
Mat: 55.9 × 71.1 cm (22 × 28")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
© The Estate of Garry Winogrand, courtesy of Fraenkel Gallery
Object number
Exhibition Label
Diane Arbus began her career specializing in fashion. Ultimately she came to hate the work and in the late 1950s began to pursue portrait photography. Arbus took her likenesses in venues that were part of her subjects' daily lives. Rather than heroicizing these figures, she created photographs that seemed calculated to expose her subjects' vulnerabilities. That sort of candor did not please everyone. However, by the time Arbus took her own life in 1971, her work had found many admirers, and she is widely considered one of the most original portraitists of her time.
It is thought that this picture was taken in Central Park after a Vietnam War protest. Arbus's grim concentration, combined with the daffodil clenched in her mouth, creates a droll impact suggestive of her many tricks for making subjects drop their defenses before her camera.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
United States\New York\Kings\New York\Manhattan Island\parks\Central Park