Robert Mapplethorpe
[Photographer, b. 1946, Floral Park, Long Island, d. 1989, Boston, Massachusetts.]

 Sex is magic. If you channel it right, there’s more energy in sex than art. 
 A cock is more problematic [than flowers] when you’re photographing, especially if you want it erect. You can’t jiggle the lights as much, and it’s hard to refine the photograph as much as you’d like... 
 I’m not after beauty, I’m after perfection, and they’re not always the same. 
 My whole point is to transcend the subject… go beyond the subject somehow, so that the composition, the lighting, all around, reaches a certain point of perfection. 
 Perfection means you don’t question anything about the photograph. 
 I just hope I can live long enough to see the fame. 
 I was part of [the gay sadomasochistic subculture]. Some of those experiences that I later recorded I had experienced firsthand, without a camera. 
 People have done pornographic pictures forever, but most of the people who involve themselves in explicit sexuality aren’t really artists. 
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