Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Tram, Nieuwpoort Belgium

John Szarkowski (director of photography at New York's’ Musuem of Modern art) in 1976, designated photographs as mirrors or windows. The ‘window’ photo was one in which the subject matter is of primary importance, a scientific record for example, and the view of the photographer secondary. The ‘mirror’ was the opposite, the photo existing mainly to reflect the photographer’s viewpoint, a self-conscious ‘art’ photo, for instance.

A useful distinction but most photographs are both mirrors and windows.

From The Genius of Photography by Gerry Badger.

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