David Hockney
[Artist, b. 1937, Bradford, England, lives in Bridlington, Yorkshire; London; and Los Angeles.]

 I believe that the very process of looking can make a thing beautiful. 

Robert Mapplethorpe
[Photographer, b. 1946, Floral Park, Long Island, d. 1989, Boston, Massachusetts.]

 I did a picture of a guy with his finger up his cock. I think that for what it is, it’s a perfect picture, because the hand gestures are beautiful. I know most people couldn’t see the hand gestures, but compositionally I think it works. I think the hand gesture is beautiful. 

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

 ...the most enduring triumph of photography has been its aptitude for discovering beauty in the humble, the inane, the decrepit. At the very least, the real has a pathos. And that pathos is—beauty. 

Richard Misrach
[Photographer, b. 1949, Los Angeles, lives in San Francisco.]

 Probably the strongest criticism leveled at my work is that I’m making “poetry of the holocaust.” But I’ve come to believe that beauty can be a very powerful conveyor of difficult ideas. It engages people when they might otherwise look away. 

Friedrich Nietzsche
[Philosopher, b. 1844, Rocken, Prussia, d. 1900, Weimar, Germany.]

 To experience a thing as beautiful means: to experience it necessarily wrongly. 

Peter Beard
[Artist, b. 1938, New York, lives in New York City, Montauk Point, New York, and Ngong Hills, Kenya.]

 I am a parasite off beauty. 

Ernst Haas
[Photographer, b. 1921, Vienna, Austria, d. 1986, New York City.]

 All I wanted was to connect my moods with those of Paris. Beauty pains and when it pained most, I shot. 

Chris Burden
[Artist, b. 1946, Boston, Massachusetts, d. 2015, Los Angeles.]

 It’s about trying to frame something. And draw attention to it and say, “Here’s the beauty in this. I’m going to put a frame around it, and I think this is beautiful.” That’s what artists do. It’s really a pointing activity. 
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