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Magnum photographer Eve Arnold dies

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Eve Arnold, the photographer who produced some of the most iconic images of Marilyn Monroe and the first woman to join Magnum Photos died this week at the age of 99

Eve Arnold may be best known for her famous black and white photographs of Marilyn Monroe on the set of her last film, The Misfits, as well as Hollywood stars like Marlene Dietrich, but she had an equally impressive body of work documenting the lives of ordinary people in all corners of the globe.

Born in 1912, she first developed an interest in photography while working at a photo-finishing plant in New York. After studying photography at the New School for Social Research in New York, where her classmates and tutors were impressed by her raw, documentary style, she started working for magazines like Time and Life. She was the first woman to join Magnum Photos in 1957 and went on to travel the world with the agency, reporting on life in the Middle East, China and South Africa. As well as photography, she also wrote the stories to accompany her images and made films.

Her ten-year-long collaboration with Marilyn Monroe resulted in some of the most intimate, moving and beautiful images of the star, but Arnold wasn’t defined by this relationship, as she wrote in her 1976 book, The Unretouched Woman; “Themes recur again and again in my work. I have been poor and I wanted to document poverty; I had lost a child and I was obsessed with birth; I was interested in politics and I wanted to know how it affected our lives; I am a woman and I wanted to know about women.”

In 2003 Eve Arnold was awarded an OBE in recognition for her services to photography.

See Eve's work at magnumphotos.com

All pictures: Rex Features

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