Irving Penn
[Photographer, b. 1917, Plainfield, New Jersey, d. 2009, New York.]

 I myself have always stood in the awe of the camera. I recognize it for the instrument it is, part Stradivarius, part scalpel. 

Tom Wolfe
[Writer, b. 1930, Richmond, Virginia, d. 2018, New York.]

 [Richard Avedon] began standing people up against white no-seam paper and lighting their faces so that every wen, hickey, zit, whitehead, blackhead, goober, acne-crater, beard follicle, nose hair, ear bristle, crow’s foot, wattle, mold, eye bag, and liver spot stood out like a tumor, and the poor grey souls looked like pustular ruins, sad, spent, demoralized. Ah, Lord, you never get out of this world alive! This was serious work. 

Nastassja Kinski
[Model and actress, b. 1959, West Berlin, Germany, lives in Los Angeles and Europe.]

 When I cannot get that moment of truth where you feel yourself opening up like a flower, I absolutely loathe the bloody camera. I can just feel this black hole eyeing me, sucking me in, and I feel like smashing it to smithereens. 

Pierre Klossowski
[Writer, artist, "but first, foremost, and always, a monomaniac", b. 1905, Paris, d. 2001, Paris.]

 The very idea of the nude is only a neutralization of a primitive and violent act. 

Man Ray (Emanuel Radnitsky)
[Artist, b. 1890, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, d. 1976, Paris.]

 If I’d had the nerve, I’d have become a thief or a gangster, but since I didn’t, I became a photographer. 

Edmundo Desnoes
[Writer, b. 1930, Havana, Cuba, lives in New York.]

 Photographs are detonators. They explode in us. We are the gaze as well as the gazed-at. The observer and the observed. 

Peter Conrad
[Critic, b. 1948, Hobart, Tasmania, lives in Oxford, England.]

 The camera is a killing chamber, which speeds up the time it claims to be conserving. Like coffins exhumed and prised open, the photographs put on show what we were and what we will be again. 

Ron Galella
[Photographer, b. 1931, Bronx, New York, lives in New York.]

 I got in my car and followed [Marlon Brando] down to Chinatown, and got about twelve shots. Brando called me over and said, “What else do you want that you don’t have already?” And I said, “I’d like a picture without the sunglasses.” He said no and punched me right in the jaw, It was so fast I didn’t see it coming. Blood was gushing out of my mouth. I drove to Bellevue. The jawbone and five teeth were broken... To this day he has scars on his knuckles from my teeth. 
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