I don't think
Diane Arbus used a Brownie Flash 6-20 at any point in her
professional lifetime, but this looks like something she'd do.
The expressionless face, and the eyes barely visible through the
sunglasses are oddly disturbing. The photographers shadow,
the single piece of litter and the ongoing conversation with the pony
fans to the right, are important elements in this lost photograph.
You've probably seen a million photographs of people in your
life. Most don't hold your interest unless they are photos of
people you know. This is not an uninteresting photograph.
There's no doubt that the air of mystery is heightened by the fact that
you're seeing this photo for the first time . It's likely that all
involved in this photograph are dead. If not, they're on Social
was the only exposed frame on a roll of eight possiblities.
Who the hell is this guy ? Is he a truck driver ? Is he an official
with the festivities in the background ? Is that his wife's shadow on
his leg ?
What's he got strapped to his back ? Is there another pair of glasses
in his shirt pocket or is that case for his sunglasses ? And what the
hell is he so happy about ?
Is that a child or a dwarf over there by the pony ? If you look
behind the truck you'll see another dwarf-like figure standing
next to a mysterious man wearing a white shirt and dark tie.
Why was only one frame exposed that day ? Was the festival devoid of
photo opportunities ? Did something bad happen ? Did the photographer
succumb to overwhelming boredom ?
Well, none of these questions will ever be answered. The elements in
this photograph came together for a fleeting moment. About 1/30 of a
second. Then they moved on.
Kodak Verichrome film.
A witness to history.