The photographs of Vivian Maier (1926-2009) met with incredible, international posthumous success, in part due to the mystery shrouding their discovery.
Although her American street photography only came to light after her death, the artist never described herself as a photographer, and would never have qualified her pictures as “work”. She lived off her governess salary and seemingly never even attempted to exhibit her photographs. Much of her film was never developed due to a lack of resources. Her work was discovered quite by chance. Near the end of her life, she could no longer afford the rental fees for the storage unit where she kept her boxes of negatives and prints, which were then sold at auction.