Mrs. T. Charlton Henry on a couch in her Chestnut Hill home, Philadelphia, PA

Artist: Diane Arbus (American, New York 1923–1971 New York)

Date: 1965

Medium: Gelatin silver print

Dimensions: Image: 21.6 x 21.5 cm (8 1/2 x 8 7/16 in.)
Sheet: 35.6 x 27.9 cm (14 x 11 in.)

Classification: Photographs

Credit Line: Purchase, Alfred Stieglitz Society Gifts, 2001

Accession Number: 2001.399

Rights and Reproduction: Copyright © The Estate of Diane Arbus, 1965.


When this portrait of a society lady was published in Harper's Bazaar, the feature writer's text for the image noted: "Mrs. T. Charlton Henry … weighs a fragile, feminine ninety pounds, but moves through life like Trojan." Although Mrs. Henry-with her jeweled dress and formidable helmet of hair-may have been an atypical Arbus subject, the photographer employed her trademark classical style to capture the power and poignancy of this wealthy upper class woman in the elegant confines of her milieu.