Alfred Stieglitz
[Photographer and curator, b. 1864, Hoboken, New Jersey, d. 1946, New York.]

 When we go through an exhibition of American photographs, we are struck by the conventionality of the subjects chosen; we see the same types of country roads, of wood interiors, the everlasting waterfall, village scenes; we see the same groups at doorsteps and on piazzas; the same unfortunate attempts at illustrating popular poetry; the same etc., etc., ad infinitum. (1892) 

Annette Messager
[Artist, b. 1943, Berck-sur-Mer, France, lives in Paris.]

 Pornography is about images that are repeated, saturated. Images of the human body, not nature. What I find in pornography is precisely the repetition of the same: the clichés of pornography. There can be no real transgression, just an image that repeats itself. 

Rondal Partridge
[Photographer, b. 1917, San Francisco, d. 2015, Berkeley, California.]

 So many people are diverted to doing what people want photographed—fashion models, buildings, mountains—they get to thinking those photographs are good. 

Henry Holmes Smith
[Artist and teacher, b. 1909, Bloomington, Illinois, d. 1986, San Rafael, California.]

 In a world of disturbing images, the general body of photography is bland, dealing complacently with nature and treating our preconceptions as insights. Strange, private worlds rarely slip past our guard... 

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

 If you read what, say, Weston was writing in the 1920s he talked about an industrial medium, reflective surfaces, contemporary subject matter—it’s a straighter line to [Ed] Ruscha’s 26 Gas Stations than it would ever be to Ansel Adam’s pictures of Yosemite and their kitschy calendar sensibility. 

Margaret Bourke-White
[Photographer, b. 1904, New York, d. 1971, Darien, Connecticut.]

 It seems to me that while it is very important to get a striking picture of a line of smoke stacks or a row of dynamos, it is becoming more and more important to reflect that life that goes on behind these photographs. (1935) 

Christian Boltanski
[Artist, b. 1944, Paris, lives in Paris.]

 ... in the eyes of its visitors, Venice has no reality of its own. Anyone visiting the place has already seen so many pictures of it that they can only attempt to view it via these clichés, and they take home photographs of Venice that are similar to the ones they already knew. Venice [is] becoming like one of those painted backdrops that photographers use in their studio. 

Stephen Shore
[Photographer, b. 1947, New York, lives in New York.]

 I went on to Flickr and it was just thousands of pieces of shit, and I just couldn’t believe it. And it’s just all conventional, it’s all cliches, it’s just one visual convention after another. 
quotes 1-8 of 77
page 1 of 10 next page last page
display quotes