Vincent Van Gogh
[Artist, b. 1853, Zundert, Netherlands, d. 1890, Auvers-sur-Oise, France.]

 I always think photographs abominable, and I don’t like to have them around, particularly not those of persons I know and love... photographic portraits wither much sooner than we ourselves do, whereas the painted portrait is a thing which is felt, done with love or respect for the human being that is portrayed. 

Roman Vishniac
[Photographer, b. 1897, Pavlovsk, Russia, d. 1990, New York.]

 A man with a camera was always suspected of being a spy. Moreover, the Jews did not want to be photographed, due to a misunderstanding of the prohibition against making graven images (photography had not been invented when the Torah was written!). I was forced to use a hidden camera... 

Paul Valéry
[Writer and poet, b. 1871, Sète, France, d. 1945, Paris.]

 Thanks to photography, the eye grew accustomed to anticipate what it should see and to see it; and it learned not to see nonexistent things which, hitherto, it had seen so clearly. 

Bill Viola
[Artist, b. 1951, New York City, lives in Los Angeles.]

 The electronic image is not fixed to any material base and, like our DNA, it has become a code that can circulate to any container that will hold it, defying death as it travels at the speed of light. 

Ellen von Unwerth
[Photographer, b. 1954, Frankfurt, Germany, lives in New York.]

 I don’t stand behind the camera drooling. Knowing that, the models are more likely to open up and relax. 

Gore Vidal
[Writer, b. 1925, West Point, New York, lives in Ravello, Italy and Los Angeles.]

 For half a century photography has been the “art form” of the untalented. Obviously some pictures are more satisfactory than others, but where is credit due? To the designer of the camera? To the finger on the button? To the law of averages? 

Édouard Vuillard
[Painter, b. 1868, Cuiseaux, Saône-et-Loire, France, d. 1940, La Baule, Loire-Atlantique, France.]

 It is clear that the “Good” and the “Beautiful” have passed out of fashion—as the “True,” photography has shown us its nature and limitations: registering phenomena as a pure effect of their existence, requiring as little man as possible. (1896) 

Diana Vreeland
[Fashion editor, b. 1903, Paris, d. 1989, New York.]

 Photographers aren’t artists, for goodness sake.