Robert Kennedy
[Politician, b. 1925, Brookline, Massachusetts, d. 1968, Los Angeles, California.]

 I examined the pictures carefully, and what I saw appeared to be no more than the clearing of a field for a farm or the basement of a house. I was relieved to hear later that this was the same reaction of virtually everyone at the meeting, including President Kennedy. Even a few days later, when more work had taken place on the site, he remarked that it looked like a football field. (On aerial photographs that triggered the 1962 Cuban missile crisis.) 

Annette Kuhn
[Writer and theorist, lives in Lancaster, England.]

 A photograph can certainly throw you off the scent. You will get nowhere, for instance, by taking a magnifying glass to it to get a closer look: you will see only patches of light and dark, an unreadable mesh of grains. The image yields nothing to that sort of scrutiny; it simply disappears. In order to show what it is evidence of, a photograph must always point you away from itself. 

Yousuf Karsh
[Photographer, b. 1908, Mardin, Armenia, d. 2002, Boston, Massachusetts.]

 I try to photograph people’s spirits and thoughts. As to the soul-taking by the photographer, I don’t feel I take away, but rather that the sitter and I give to each other. It becomes an act of mutual participation. 

Max Kozloff
[Critic, editor, and photographer, b. 1933, Chicago, Illinois, lives in New York.]

 Though infested with many bewildering anomalies, photographs are considered our best arbiters between our visual perceptions and the memory of them. It is not only their apparent ‘objectivity’ that grants photographs their high status in this regard, but our belief that in them, fugitive sensation has been laid to rest. 

Germaine Krull
[Photographer, b. 1897, Wilda, East Prussia, Germany (now Poland), d. 1985, Wetzlar, Germany.]

 The camera need not invent, manipulate or fool. It does not paint, nor does it imagine. The photographer is a witness, the witness of his time. 

Chris Killip
[Photographer, b. 1946, Douglas, Isle of Man, United Kingdom, lives in Boston.]

 I don’t like smiley pictures. A smile is a defense mechanism. It says, “You can’t have the real me but here’s my smile.” You get closer to the real person when they stop smiling. 

Yves Klein
[Artist, b. 1928, Nice, France, d. 1962, Paris.]

 In regard to my attempt at the immaterial… it is impossible to give you a photograph. (On refusing to allow photographic documentation of the “Zones of Immaterial Pictorial Sensibility,” significant early conceptual art pieces; 1959-1962. Collectors purchased gold bars, threw them into the Seine under the artist’s supervision, and then burned the associated receipts and paperwork. The ultimate art is a memory of the experience.) 

Martin Luther King
[Civil rights leader, religious leader, b. 1929, Atlanta, Georgia, d. 1968, Memphis, Tennessee.]

 I’m not being cold blooded about it, but it is so much more important for you to take a picture of us getting beaten up than for you to be another person joining in the fray. (To photographer Flip Schulke at a civil rights march.)