Books
John Berger,Jean Mohr

Another Way of Telling

Lefroyhas quotedlast month
The dog came out of the forest is a simple statement. When that sentence is followed by The man left the door open, the possibility of a narrative has begun. If the tense of the second sentence is changed into The man had left the door open, the possibility becomes almost a promise. Every narrative proposes an agreement about the unstated but assumed connections existing between events.
Lefroyhas quoted2 months ago
photograph is simpler than most memories, its range more limited. Yet with the invention of photography we acquired a new means of expression more closely associated with memory than any other. The Muse of photography is not one of Memory’s daughters, but Memory herself. Both the photograph and the remembered depend upon and equally oppose the passing of time. Both preserve moments, and propose their own form of simultaneity, in which all their images can coexist. Both stimulate, and are stimulated by, the inter-connectedness of events. Both seek instants of revelation, for it is only such instants which give full reason to their own capacity to withstand the flow of time.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
Kertesz himself said: ‘The camera is my tool. Through it I give reason to everything around me.’
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
The photograph is lucid because it speaks, through an idea, to our fingertips, or to our memory of what our fingertips felt.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
Normally a photograph arrests this movement and cuts across the appearances of the event photographed. Its meaning becomes ambiguous.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
a photographer, through the choice of the instant photographed, may try to persuade the viewer to lend that instant a past and a future.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
the best photographers worked by intuition. In terms of their work, this lack of theory did not matter much. What did matter is that the photographic possibility remained theoretically hidden.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
The enigma of appearances

To read what has never been written.
– Hofmannsthal
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
Positivism and the camera and sociology grew up together.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
The mutation being that photographs supply information without having a language of their own.

Photographs do not translate from appearances. They quote from them.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
It is this reading, often intuitive and very fast, which decides his choice of the instant to be photographed.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
The photographer chooses the event he photographs. This choice can be thought of as a cultural construction. The space for this construction is, as it were, cleared by his rejection of what he did not choose to photograph. The construction is his reading of the event which is in front of his eyes.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
unlike the story-teller or painter or actor, the photographer only makes, in any one photograph, a single constitutive choice: the choice of the instant to be photographed.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
photograph preserves a moment of time and prevents it being effaced by the supersession of further moments. In this respect photographs might be compared to images stored in the memory.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
The ambiguity of a photograph does not reside within the instant of the event photographed: there the photographic evidence is less ambiguous than any eye-witness account.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
photograph arrests the flow of time in which the event photographed once existed
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
What makes photography a strange invention – with unforeseeable consequences – is that its primary raw materials are light and time.
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
make successful portraits, it probably helps to have taken some self-portraits, and also to have learnt to accept the photographs others have taken of yourself. Otherwise, how is it possible to understand the embarrassment, the worry, even the panic, which often assails people when they know they are being photographed?
Lefroyhas quoted3 months ago
aspects which illustrate how photographs are ambiguous. A photograph is a meeting place where the interests of the photographer, the photographed, the viewer and those who are using the photograph are often contradictory. These contradictions both hide and increase the natural ambiguity of the photographic image.
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