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Jane Gottesman

Jane Gottesman is co-curator with Geoffrey Biddle, of the photographic exhibition and book Game Face: What Does a Female Athlete Look Like?

As a kid, I studied the family portraits displayed on a wall in my maternal grandparents’ house in Connecticut. My mother was the stiffly posed child with a shy smile. My father was that eager young naval officer with dark hair. Two generations of family hung on that wall like a loose patchwork and I spent hours staring at those photographs, learning about the circle of life. Anne Frank’s picture, though it wasn’t on the wall at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, was a photograph I studied intensely in that era. I read Anne’s private thoughts in her diary, I examined her likeness on the cover of that paperback—intelligent, vulnerable, playful and poised—and I faced the fact of innocents meeting unnatural deaths.

When I think of Anne Frank now. my visual memory trumps my memory for the written word; I suppose a well-made portrait reveals a person’s character in ways that words cannot.

 is co-curator with Geoffrey Biddle, of the photographic exhibition and book Game Face: What Does a Female Athlete Look Like?

As a kid, I studied the family portraits displayed on a wall in my maternal grandparents’ house in Connecticut. My mother was the stiffly posed child with a shy smile. My father was that eager young naval officer with dark hair. Two generations of family hung on that wall like a loose patchwork and I spent hours staring at those photographs, learning about the circle of life. Anne Frank’s picture, though it wasn’t on the wall at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, was a photograph I studied intensely in that era. I read Anne’s private thoughts in her diary, I examined her likeness on the cover of that paperback—intelligent, vulnerable, playful and poised—and I faced the fact of innocents meeting unnatural deaths.

When I think of Anne Frank now. my visual memory trumps my memory for the written word; I suppose a well-made portrait reveals a person’s character in ways that words cannot.