Robert Heinecken
[Photographer, b. 1931, Denver, d. 2006, Albuquerque, New Mexico.]

 Some of my enthusiasm for the [found] photograph was based on the fact that there was some residual illusion of reality in it always, no matter what I did to it. 
 Many pictures turn out to be limp translations of the known world instead of vital objects which create an intrinsic world of their own. There is a vast difference between taking a picture and making a photograph. 
 The photograph... is not a picture of something, but is an object about something. 
 I have the feeling that there are things happening that are really very interesting things, if we can somehow find the key that makes them visible. 
 I was never in a school situation where someone said, “This is the way a photograph is supposed to look.” I was completely open to cut them up, or do anything like that. I think if I had been in touch with people earlier, then I wouldn’t have felt comfortable doing that. It would have been too bizarre. 
 I am interested in what I term gestalts; picture circumstances which bring together disparate images or ideas so as to form new meanings and new configurations. 
 An aspect of the work has to do with altering the literal/cultural meaning of existing public images by making minimal changes and additions. Using superimposition, juxtaposition and other contextual changes, I am functioning as a visual guerrilla. 
 By confusing distinctions between what constitutes eroticism versus pornography versus beauty versus banality—that’s all one continuum. It is an interesting source, and I do feel that the most highly developed sensibility I have is sexual, as opposed to intellectual or emotional, and I think it’s a matter of understanding that and accepting that and not trying to alter myself. 
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