Kessler documentary on Arbus’ Huberts photos

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Post by Chris Paquette

Documentation that supports that a cache of photos discovered last year of Huberts Side Show people were taken by Diane Arbus.
Documentation that supports that a cache of photos discovered last year of Huberts Side Show people were taken by Diane Arbus.

Those who attended the November 13th Salon du Festival event, part of this weekend’s First Person Arts Festival, missed some of David Kessler’s documentary, The Huberts Collector on the Diane Art-Bus, about the lost Diane Arbus photos from her early days of hanging out with the freaks at Huberts Side Show in New York City.

Kessler’s film had to be shown on a back up DVD player when the first system failed to operate. The result was a mismatch in format that cut off a good portion of the film’s width and many of the captions. While this was clearly a distraction, the film was still very enjoyable and fast paced in typical Kessler-esque excellence.

The story of the lost Diane Arbus photos has a bit of everything. Mystery, suspense, intrigue, legal battles, you name it. Not to mention the discovery of some of the earliest creative works of one of photography’s most interesting and influential artists. One of the most highly anticipated photo auctions of the year was abruptly halted at the last minute leaving collectors stunned.

If you are not familiar with the background of this story, I would recommend reading this post from artblog before watching the Kessler documentary.

Kessler has had bad luck with technical difficulties before. Last year’s First Person Festival world premiere of the Zoe Strauss documentary, If You Break the Skin, was plagued by poor audio.

The good news is, as a consolation to those who sat through the technical difficulties, Kessler has uploaded the 15-minute film on his web site, Studioscopic.

Christopher H. Paquette is a Philadelphia photographer and blogger.

Tags

christopher h. paquette, david kessler, diane arbus, first person arts festival

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