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FRANKly the Best Photographs We’ve Ever Seen

Robert Frank is considered one of the most influential and acclaimed photographers of the 20th century. Frank is best known for his work in the book The Americans featuring photographs of the United States in the 1950s as he travelled across the country as a Swiss immigrant.

The photographs transport you back in time to explore iconic symbols of the American dream seen through the eyes of an outsider, while simultaneously evoking a sense of alienation and hardship felt by many of these American dreamers.

Frank later moved to creating films, most notably Pull My Daisy (1959) which typified the Beat Generation and the controversial Cocksucker Blues (1972) which featured the Rolling Stones on tour and their provocative behaviour backstage. The Stones sued Frank, with Jagger explaining “It’s a f***ing good film, Robert, but if it shows in America we’ll never be allowed in the country again”.

Below are some of Frank’s most notable photographs.

Drive-in movie, Detroit 1955 © Robert Frank

Drive-in movie, Detroit 1955 © Robert Frank

 

Picnic Ground-Glendale, California, 1958 © Robert Frank

Picnic Ground-Glendale, California, 1958 © Robert Frank

 

Motorama, Los Angeles, California, Robert Frank

Motorama, Los Angeles, California, Robert Frank

 

Charleston, South Carolina, 1955. © Robert Frank

Charleston, South Carolina, 1955. © Robert Frank

 

Men’s Room, Railway Station, Memphis, 1955 © Robert Frank

Men’s Room, Railway Station, Memphis, 1955 © Robert Frank

 

City Hall, Reno, Nevada, 1956 © Robert Frank

City Hall, Reno, Nevada, 1956 © Robert Frank

 

Ranch market, Hollywood, California, Robert Frank

Ranch market, Hollywood, California, Robert Frank

 

Elevator, Miami Beach, 1955, Robert Frank

Elevator, Miami Beach, 1955, Robert Frank

 

Parade, Hoboken, New Jersey, 1955, Robert Frank "The Americans"

Parade, Hoboken, New Jersey, 1955, Robert Frank “The Americans”

 

You can further explore Robert Frank’s life in the documentary DON’T BLINK ROBERT FRANK, showing at the Melbourne Film Festival on the 5th and 13th of August. Book tickets now.

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