Robert Capa (Endre Ernő Friedmann)
[Photographer, b. 1913, Budapest, Hungary, d. 1954, Thai Binh, Vietnam.]

 You don’t have to pose your camera. The pictures are there, and you just take them. The truth is the best picture, the best propaganda. (On the Spanish Civil War, 1937) 

Nobuyoshi Araki
[Photographer, b. 1940, Tokyo, lives in Tokyo.]

 Don’t you think that it is necessary to have a sense of brutality in photography? 

Dave Hickey
[Writer and critic, b. 1939, rural Texas, lives in Los Angeles.]

 As a step-child of the Factory, I am certain of one thing: images can change the world. I have seen it happen—experienced the “Before and After,” as Andy might say—so I know that images can alter the visual construction of reality we all inhabit, can revise the expectations that we bring to it and priorities that we impose on it—and know, further, that these alterations can entail profound social and political ramifications. 

William Garnett
[Photographer, b. 1916, Chicago, d. 2006, Napa, California.]

 To show people the ugly doesn’t accomplish much. I came to the conclusion that I can’t really make much of a change in society’s attitude towards land use by just showing them what’s wrong. I’ve come to the conclusion you have to show them what’s right, and inspire them. 

Susie Bright
[Writer, feminist, and activist, b. 1958, Arlington, Virginia, lives in Santa Cruz, California.]

 Seeing lesbian photography is just the tip of my radicalized clitoris. I have modeled for, commissioned, published, and fought for these pictures, and answered threats against them. I’ve seen the feminist movement bring these pictures to life, and I’ve seen that same movement try to suppress the liberating results. 

Roberta McGrath
[Critic, lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.]

 “Taking” a photograph is a way of making sense of the world. It imposes and order, a unity on the world which is lacking. To take a photograph is to exercise an illusory control, a mastery which is characteristic of voyeurism. But the sexual connotations of the verb are also obvious: the slang for carnal knowledge. It implies a physical penetration of the other while the photograph is a penetration of the space of the other. 

Susan Sontag
[Writer, theorist, and critic, b. 1933, New York, d. 2004, New York.]

 Let the atrocious images haunt us. Even if they are only tokens, and cannot possibly encompass most of the reality to which they refer, they still perform a vital function. The images say: This is what human beings are capable of doing—may volunteer to do, enthusiastically, self-righteously. Don’t forget. 

Marc Riboud
[Photographer, b. 1923, St.-Genis-Laval, France, d. 2016, Paris.]

 Photography cannot change the world, but it can show the world as it changes. 
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