[Artist, b. 1897, Würzburg, Bavaria, Germany, d. 1966, Wamel Dorf, Über Soest, West Germany.]
I’d like to briefly state the accomplishment that we expect from a photographer. He must make the person being photographed forget that he has eaten from the tree of knowledge.
Let us... leave art to the artists, and let us try to use the medium of photography to create photographs that can endure because of their photographic qualities.
Technique does not need to be interpreted. It interprets itself. You have to choose the right objects and focus on them precisely and they will tell you their own stories.
... modern life is no longer thinkable without photography.
In photography one should surely proceed from essence of the object and attempt to represent it with photographic terms alone.
There is an urgent need to examine old opinions and look at things from a new viewpoint. There must be an increase in the joy one takes in an object, and the photographer should become fully conscious of the splendid fidelity of reproduction made possible by his technique. Nature, after all, is not so poor that she requires constant improvement.
To do justice to modern technology’s rigid linear structure, to the lofty gridwork of cranes and bridges, to the dynamism of machines operating at one thousand horsepower—only photography is capable of that. What those who are attached to the “painterly” style regard as photography’s defect, the mechanical reproduction of form—is just what makes it superior to all other means of expression.
There was a time when one looked over one’s shoulder with an ironical smile at the photographer and when photography as a profession seemed almost invariably a target for ridicule. That time is now over.