Robert Adams
[Photographer and writer, b. 1937, Orange, New Jersey, lives in Astoria, Oregon.]

 Nature photography… that acknowledges what is wrong, is admittedly sometimes hard to bear—it has to encompass our mistakes. Yet in the long run, it is important; in order to endure our age of apocalypse, we have to be reconciled not only to avalanche and hurricane, but to ourselves. 
 By Interstate 70: a dog skeleton, a vacuum cleaner, TV dinners, a doll, a pie, rolls of carpet... Later, next to the South Platte River: algae, broken concrete, jet contrails, the smell of crude oil... What I hope to document, though not at the expense of surface detail, is the form that underlies this apparent chaos. 
 Pictures should look like they were easily taken. 
 No place is boring, if you’ve had a good night’s sleep and have a pocket full of unexposed film. 
 Many have asked, pointing incredulously toward a sweep of tract homes and billboards, why picture that? The question sounds simple, but it implies a difficult issue—why open our eyes anywhere but in undamaged places like national parks? 
 The suburban West is, from a moral perspective, depressing evidence that we have misused our freedom. There is, however, another aspect to the landscape, an unexpected glory. Over the cheap tracts and littered arroyos one sometimes sees a light as clean as that recorded by O'Sullivan. Since it owes nothing to our care, it is an assurance; beauty is final. 
 Invention in photography is so laborious as to be in most instances perverse. 
 Many photographers in fact remind me in temperament of Thomas Hart Benton; in addition to painting, he said, what he liked was to “drink whiskey and talk big.” 
quotes 1-8 of 53
page 1 of 7 next page last page
display quotes