Catherine Opie
[Photographer, b. 1961, Sandusky, Ohio, lives in Los Angeles.]

 I concentrate on disturbing the devices that society imposes on variant communities to keep them “ghettoized” by class, race, sexuality, and gender. 

David Goldblatt
[Photographer, b. 1930, Randfontein, South Africa, lives in Johannesburg.]

 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. 

Philip Jones Griffiths
[Photojournalist, b. 1936, Rhuddian, Wales, d. 2008, London.]

 Virtually the whole of society believes in what they believe not by direct experience but by what they’ve been told. We photographers are in this exalted, privileged position of actually going out to find out for ourselves, and that’s why we’re so dangerous. Because we were there. We saw what happened. 

John Heartfield (Helmut Franz Joseph Herzfeld)
[Artist, b. 1891, Munich, Germany, d. 1968, Berlin.]

 Use Photography as a Weapon! (Sign over the entrance to the John Heartfield room at the 1929 “Film und Foto” exhibition in Stuttgart.) 

George
[Artist, b. 1942, Devon, England, lives in London.]

 Our reason for making pictures is to change people and not to congratulate them on being how they are. 

Gordon Parks
[Photographer and filmmaker, b. 1912, Fort Scott, Kansas, d. 2006, New York.]

 I picked up a camera because it was my choice of weapon against what I hated most about the universe: racism, intolerance, poverty. I could have just as easily picked up a knife or gun, like many of my childhood friends did… 

Victor Burgin
[Artist and writer, b. 1941, Sheffield, England, lives in London.]

 The only pertinent political question in relation to an “identity” [or its photograph] is not “Is it really coherent?” but “What does it actually achieve?” 

Elliott Erwitt
[Photographer, b. 1928, Paris, France, lives in New York.]

 I don’t believe that photography can change the world, but it can show the world changing. 
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