Roger Ballen
[Photographer, b. 1950, New York, lives in Johannesburg, South Africa.]

 My purpose in taking photographs over the past forty years has ultimately been about defining myself. It has been fundamentally a psychological and existential journey. 

Nikki S. Lee
[Photographer, b. 1970, Kye-Chang, Korea, lives in New York.]

 Just because I use the photographic medium, that doesn’t mean I’m a photographer. 

David LaChapelle
[Photographer, b. 1968, Connecticut, lives in New York.]

 I was a fag and a misfit, and I was being laughed out of high school in Connecticut. So I dropped out. I had all F’s—except in my art classes, anyway. I came to stay with my friend who was a punk, shaved head, militant dyke who worked at CBGB, and discovered that everything that made me a freak in Connecticut, people embraced me for here [in New York]. 

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

 It’s not enough to have talent. You also have to be Hungarian. 

Chester Higgins
[Photographer, b. 1946, Lexington, Kentucky, lives in Brooklyn, New York.]

 I had a choice: I could wail against the racism of the [prevailing] pictures or I could go and create photographs that would tell a contrary story. 

Eleanor Antin
[Artist, b. 1935, New York, lives in San Diego, California.]

 Why should I be limited by my own biography? 

Chuck Close
[Artist, b. 1940, Monroe, Washington, lives in New York.]

 When I went to pick [artist Joe Zucker] up to photograph him, I didn’t recognize him. He has curly, blonde, bushy hair—but he had bought a jar of Vaseline, greased his hair down, borrowed someone’s white shirt and tie, someone else’s glasses, and he looked like a used car salesman. He understood that all he had to do was provide me with the evidence that someone like that existed for a 100th of a second. It didn’t necessarily have to be him. 

Adrian Piper
[Artist, b. 1948, Harlem, New York, lives in Hyannis, Massachusetts.]

 I am black. What are you going to do about it? 
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