John Szarkowski
[Curator, critic, historian, and photographer, b. 1925, Ashland, Wisconsin, d. 2007, Pittsfield, Massachusetts.]

 The basic effect of modern mass media on photography has been to erode the creative independence and the accountability of the photographer who has worked for them. (1967) 
 Photography is a contest between a photographer and the presumptions of approximate and habitual seeing. The contest can be held anywhere... 
 Like an organism, photography was born whole. It is in our progressive discovery of it that its history lies. 
 The photographer’s vision convinces us to the degree that the photographer hides his hand. 
 A beginning photographer hopes to learn to use the medium to describe the truth. The intelligent journeyman has learned that there is not enough film to do that. 
 [Snapshots were] pure and unadulterated photographs, and sometimes they hinted at the existence of visual truths that had escaped all other systems of detection. 
 Photography’s central sense of purpose and aesthetic: the precise and lucid description of significant fact. 
 I am not especially interested in anonymous photography, or avant-garde photography, or in straight, crooked, or any other subspecific category; I am interested in the entire, indivisible hairy beast—because in the real world, where photographs are made, these subspecies, or races, interbreed shamelessly and continually. (2006) 
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