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A Peek into Our Collections: identical twins, Cathleen (l.) and Colleen

Showcasing the breadth and depth of our collections—from ancient to modern times and across a variety of media—A Peek into Our Collections offers a window on what will be on view when our new facility opens to the public on November 16.

Diane Arbus, identical twins, Cathleen (l.) and Colleen, members of a twin club in New Jersey, 1966, American, Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum.

In 1956, Diane Arbus left her commercial photography business and began documenting “American rites, manners, and customs,” an interest evident in identical twins. Here Arbus focuses her camera tightly on her subjects, enabling a near-forensic inspection of their features, expressions, gestures, and dress. Formally striking, the photographs draw out moments of strangeness in everyday contexts, exposing the fragility and artificiality of social constructs.

See other highlighted objects here.