Eve Arnold, Legendary Photographer of Illuminating Images, Dies at 99

All About Eve: The Photography of Eve Arnold

Eve Arnold, who came to be regarded as a grande dame of postwar photojournalism for her bold, revealing images of subjects as diverse as Marilyn Monroe and migratory potato pickers, died on Wednesday in London at the age of 99. Born in Philadelphia on April 21, 1912, Ms. Arnold had lived in Great Britain since 1961.

Her death was announced by Magnum Photos, the photography cooperative to which she had belonged for more than a half-century. She was among the first women Magnum hired to make pictures. Ms. Arnold was a leading light in what is considered to be the golden age of news photography, when magazines like Life and Look commanded attention with big, arresting pictures provided by photographers who included Henri Cartier-Bresson, Gordon Parks, Robert Capa and Margaret Bourke-White.

Acclaimed for capturing celebrities in intimate moments after winning their trust, Ms. Arnold developed a particular rapport with Marilyn Monroe, the subject of a book of Arnold photographs. Foreshadowing the celebrity portfolios of photographers like Annie Leibovitz, Ms. Arnold captured Joan Crawford squirming into a girdle, Malcolm X collecting fistfuls of dollars at a rally in Washington and James Cagney and his wife doing an impromptu dance in a barn.

But other pictures, just as memorable, were of the unfamous. Among the more than 750,000 Ms. Arnold made were pictures in a South African shantytown, a Havana brothel and a Moscow psychiatric hospital. She documented a small Long Island town, Miller Place, and the first minutes of a baby’s life. She was an official photographer on 40 movie sets.

Her many honors include the Order of the British Empire and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the American Society of Magazine Photographers. She was a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society and named a “Master Photographer” by the International Center of Photography in New York, considered by many to be the world’s most prestigious photographic honor.

You can read more about Eve Arnold’s life and work in The New York Times here.

View a slide show of Eve Arnold’s photography here.

All About Eve: The Photography of Eve Arnold

Eve Arnold: Lifetime Achievement Award, The 2010 Sony World Photography Awards

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