Alexander Gardner
[Photographer, b. 1821, Paisley, Scotland, d. 1882, Washington, D.C.]

 Such a picture [A Harvest of Death, Gettysburg battlefield, July, 1863] conveys a useful moral: It shows the blank horror and reality of war, in opposition to the pageantry. Here are the dreadful details! Let them aid in preventing such another calamity falling upon the nation. (1866) 

Lewis Baltz
[Photographer, b. 1945, Newport Beach, California, d. 2014, Paris.]

 I used photography to distance myself from a world that I loathed and was powerless to improve. 

Vik Muniz
[Artist, b. 1961, Sao Paulo, Brazil, lives in New York.]

 I have failed so much that I now stand on failure itself. It has become my work place and where I harvest my best ideas. 

Roland Barthes
[Writer, critic, and theorist, b. 1915, Cherbourg, d. 1980, Paris.]

 I observe with horror an anterior future of which death is the stake... In front of the photograph of my mother as a child, I tell myself she is going to die... Whether or not the subject is already dead, every photograph is this catastrophe. 

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

 If I hadn’t documented [my wife’s] death, both the description of my state of mind and my declaration of love would have been incomplete. I found consolation in unmasking lust and loss, by staging a bitter confrontation between symbols. After Yoko’s death, I didn’t want to photograph anything but life—honestly. Yet every time I pressed the button, I ended up close to death, because to photograph is to stop time. I want to tell you something, listen closely: photography is murder. 

Bill Jay
[Photographer, writer, and curator, b. 1940, Maidenhead, England, d. 2009, Samara, Costa Rica.]

 Making a photograph is as difficult as finding a particularly frisky cat in a dark room. Making a great photograph is as chancy as trying to catch a frisky cat in a black room in which there is no cat. 

Edgar Allan Poe
[Writer, b. 1809, Boston, Massachusetts, d. 1849, Baltimore, Maryland.]

 [The daguerreotype] itself must undoubtedly be regarded as the most important, and perhaps the most extraordinary triumph of modern science. 

Gerhard Richter
[Artist, b. 1932, Dresden, lives in Düsseldorf.]

 I had had enough of bloody painting, and painting from a photograph seemed to me the most moronic thing that anyone could do. 
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