The Startling Portraiture of Mary Ellen Mark

Known for her humanistic black-and-white portraits, Mary Ellen Mark made it her life's work to photograph those who didn't quite fit in. Whether that meant capturing the day-to-day life of Indian circus performers, the peculiarity of twins, or the loneliness of celebrities, she was drawn to people with pronounced personalities. “Attitude,” a new exhibition at the Howard Greenberg Gallery, explores this idea through 40 of the late photographer's images. “She was passionate and compassionate. Life mattered. Animals mattered. People mattered,” said Melissa Harris, the show's curator. The images focus on “self-possession,” Harris said, and highlight Mark's ability to make viewers “feel, without telling you what or how to feel.” The gallery has shared a selection of these images with The Atlantic, presented below.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Marco Restivo / Barcroft Media via Getty

    Photos of the Week: Giant Teapot, Arizona Sunset, Egyptian Goose

    Moving a home through the streets of San Francisco, hiking the Great Wall in China, visiting a ski resort in Tehran, opening a “hug room” in Rome, walking a snow maze in Manitoba, and much more

  • General Photographic Agency / Getty

    100 Years Ago in Photos: A Look Back at 1921

    A look at some of the events and sights from around the world a century ago

  • Salvatore Allegra / AP

    Recent Eruptions on Mount Etna

    Italy’s Mount Etna has erupted four times in the past six days, sending ash into the sky and lava down its slopes.

  • Alexander Hassenstein / Getty

    Photos of the Week: Mars Rover, Green Fur, Icicle Tunnel

    Lava flows on Mount Etna, ski championships in Italy, ice-skating in the Netherlands, an image from New York Fashion Week, freezing conditions in Texas, and much more