Text by Tiana Reid
Arnold’s photographs are densely informational, at once quiet and clamorous. Cinematic in the way their depiction exceeds the frame, each photograph captures a moment of myriad possibilities, of what may have happened, or a presentiment of what might come next.
At a glance, Arnold’s images may appear as tableaux vivants, yet there is no arrangement here, no direction for dramatic effect. It is Arnold’s commitment to photographing his roamed environments combined with his deft eye and ability to arrest synchronistic moments, uncanny juxtapositions, and heartbeat expressions that capture his subjects in the burn of life.
Such grace and intensity are augmented only by Arnold’s characteristic perspective that often tilts towards the macabre. His subjects don’t always look directly at the camera, exposing a strange vulnerability and an elegant disquiet. Yet Arnold’s gritty humor doesn’t impose on his subjects who are unshrinking and expansive, even in his presence.
To view Arnold’s work is to become immersed in his perspective and to find the wounded delicacy and off-kilter aesthetic of quotidian things. To be so fully in the present moment, one begins to see a shimmering of things in all its thickness and in a flicker of dissociation—really notice abstraction at a distance.
Daniel Arnold (b.1980 Milwaukee, WI) is a New York-based photographer and photojournalist. His work has been featured in the New York Times, TIME, Vogue, and Interview Magazine. His first monograph, Pickpocket, was produced by Elara Pictures and published by Dashwood Books in 2021. He presented his first solo exhibition with Larrie in October of 2019.