David Goldblatt
[Photographer, b. 1930, Randfontein, South Africa, d. 2018, Johannesburg.]

 In an obvious sense, photographers, by virtue of being there and ‘recording’ the scene, are witnesses and their work becomes evidence in an almost forensic sense. 
 I regard myself as an unlicensed, self-appointed observer and critic of South African society which I continue to explore with the camera. 
 I said that the camera was not a machine-gun and that photographers shouldn’t confuse their response to the politics of the country with their role as photographers. 
 …making a photograph is rather like writing a paragraph or a short piece, and putting together a whole string of photographs is like producing a piece of writing in many ways. There is the possibility of making coherent statements in an interesting, subtle, complex way. 
 ...if I had to report on my activities to a heavenly labour ministry, I would, under the heading of job description, say that I am a self-appointed observer and critic of the society into which I was born, with a tendency to doing honour or giving recognition to what is often overlooked or unseen. 
 It was always possible for Joseph Stalin to remove Trotsky from a group photograph. Digital technology made it simpler, easier, faster...