Background: Susan Sontag was a famous essay writer as well as an experimental novelist, short story writer, film writer, director, and photographer. Her work. Susan Sontag: On Photography; America: Seen Through Photographs, Darkly It was stressed by Sontag to compare Diane Arbus’ Woman With a Veil on Fifth Avenue and Lartigue’s Racecourse at Nice America, Seen Through Photographs, Darkly As Susan Sontag observed in her essay – which gives its title to that of the conference – the work of many of the.

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The price of this shift is that photography does not serve as ‘a liberation, but as a subtraction from the self’. The photographs of “freaks,” as Arbus called them, were meant to convey the experience of the photograph being taken and then dar,ly the audience to empathize with the photographer’s foray photographd the sub-cultural world the photographs were taken in.

Sontag cites Walt Whitman’s work as evidence of an emerging trend in democratizing all aspects of art.

michele’s blog: Sontag’s “America Seen Through Photographs, Darkly”

Sontag noted that once people see things they aren’t used to enough, they become desensitized. Rosie the Riveter Image About Me. Whitmanesque thinking applied towards photography contends that photographs that are not of inherently beautiful subjects are more meaningful, darkkly the beauty in them must be searched for. I don’t feel I have the capacity to express my thoughts and gut feelings in the same way the authors of these articles have done.

Lartigue Racecourse At Nice Despite these photographs seeming “strange” at first glimpse, a closer look into the photograph and what surrounds the photograph might give clues to the americs normalcy. Since Arbus’ subjects consented to photigraphs posed for the photograph, wouldn’t that be the reason that her “ugly” subjects did not show their pains to the camera?

In Arbus’ case, the fact that she was raised in a middle-class Jewish household shows that she was not photographing the weird because it was familiar to her. However, some photographers have deviated from this trend and began photographing subjects that seem less susab beautiful to the viewer.


Posted by greatsofthewest at 1: Sontag discusses how several things are that are suppressed in our society later become integrated into our society images of death and dying, for example.

Towards the end of the essay, I began thinking about the media and art and its role in our society. Sontag also argued that the context shapes the interpretation of the photograph.

Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Reading quotes from Arbus on the internet, I notice that her ideas of the work only reflect Sontag’s in part. Even pain and terrible atrocities are presented in the same way, as ‘Art that is a self willed test sene hardness’ High art in capitalist countries is there ‘to surpres, or at least reduce moral and sensory queasiness.

America, seen through photographs, darkly / Susan Sontag

View a FREE sample. Knowing too much about the latter can cloud appreciation of the former.

Get On Photography from Amazon. This section contains words approx. Her treatment of the marginal spheres of society does not invite people the identify with the “freaks” she displays, and in that humanity is no longer “one”. Order our On Photography Study Guide. Susan Sontag describes Arbus way of photography as a colonization of new experiences, finding a new way to sen at familiar subjects, a fight against boredom.

The work of Diane Arbus, for Sontag, was far different from what Whitman envisioned and Stieglitz attempted to realize. Susan Sontag – Dusan Photography: The thrill of observing Arbus’s work is the success of observing them without impedance.

The Heroism of Vision. There is obviously a clash of misunderstanding going on and not a willingness to open up to each other.

While I did not look too much into the photographs I selected to include in this blog, I can think of numerous reasons skntag the people in the photographs to be eontag or smiling the way that they are. The presentation of the artist as the central point of an artistic work is fascinating but only works to certain degrees. If all of that sounds complicated, it is. Immediately after presenting this argument, however, Sontag brings up the work of Diane Arbus, whose work Sontag describes as “anti-humanist.


It maybe be that everyone has a secret fascination with suicide and tragedy as artists seem to be honored and recognized after they end their lives more so than througb they were alive. Through photographing traditionally less than beautiful subjects, Arbus was arguing and supporting Sontag’s argument that everything is beautiful.

Hey, I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say GREAT blog!

It seems to me that art might be a vehicle for the suppressed to become an accepted part of society. With Lartigue, the women are staring off into the distance and sort of romanticized and implied as being beautiful even though their faces are not shown in the photograph.

Similarly, people eventually become desensitized to the artist’s process and accept any irregularities as relatively normal. Whitman’s view was challenged and, the text argues, entirely defeated, mostly by accident, by photography.

I should probably have talked more about Arbus’ fascination with photographing “freaks” and the interplay between the artist and his or her work. As people are more exposed to shocking things, the element of shock decreases, thus allowing more acceptance on the part of the viewer. This might seem contrary to what one might think because someone in an insane asylum, for example, might have some inner struggles due to the society they live in.