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DAIDO MORIYAMA
[b. 1938] Japanese photographer
I want to take a lot of Nasty photos. - Daido Moriyama

And it was on the basis of these principles that Moriyama developed his personal style, saying, "For me, capturing what I feel with my body is more important than the technicalities of photography. If the image is shaking, it's OK, if it's out of focus, it's OK. Clarity isn't what photography is about. - Daido Moriyama - 50 Contemporary Photographers You Should Know by Florian Heine, Brad Finger

The camera doesn't matter. - Daido Moriyama - 50 Contemporary Photographers You Should Know by Florian Heine, Brad Finger

The crushing force of time is before my eyes, and I myself try to keep pressing the shutter release of the camera. - Daido Moriyama

Until a few years ago, I was able to stave off an awareness that there is not an ounce of beauty in the world, and that humanity is a thing of extreme hideousness. So I could shoot and believe in something. (1972) - Daido Moriyama

[My] photos are often out of focus, rough, streaky, warped, etc. But if you think about it, a normal human being will in one day perceive an infinite number of images, and some of them are focused upon, others are barely seen out of the corner of one’s eye. - Daido Moriyama

It may look like I’m just pointing the camera at what’s in front of me. But I’m trying to photograph what people see, but don’t notice – something that’s mysterious and unknown in everyday life. - Daido Moriyama

For me photographs are taken in the eye before you’ve even thought what they mean. That’s the reality I’m interested in capturing. - Daido Moriyama

I have always felt that the world is an erotic place... For me cities are enormous bodies of people’s desires. And as I search for my own desires within them, I slice into time, seeing the moment. That’s the kind of camera work I like. - Daido Moriyama

The photographer who attempts to fit happily into the world by using the traditional perspective of the camera will end up falling into the hole of the “idea” he has dug for himself. - Daido Moriyama

I use the camera as a procedure by which continually to affirm my identity, asking myself: “What is the meaning of life in a world and among human beings as grotesque, scandalous, and accidental as the one in which I live and those with whom I interact?” - Daido Moriyama

For me, capturing what I feel with my body is more important than the technicalities of photography. If the image is shaking, it’s okay, if it’s out of focus, it’s okay. Clarity isn’t what photography is about. - Daido Moriyama

Nowadays, people take photos casually. Especially of their daily lives. The casual attitude toward photography is the same as mine. There is nothing right or wrong. - Daido Moriyama

I was not against America, or the war, or against politics. I was against photography. - Daido Moriyama

I brush aside words and ideas, and focus on photography as a means of expressing a message that is both psychological and phenomenological. Without that framework, my approach is very simple—there is no artistry. I just shoot freely. For example, most of my snapshots I take from a moving car, or while running, without the finder, and in those instances one might say that I’m taking the pictures more with my body than with my eyes. - Daido Moriyama

…I wish to take photographs freely, without technical restrictions. For example, I take most of my snapshots from a moving car, or without looking through the viewfinder when I am on foot. You might say I take photographs not only with my eyes, but with my entire body. - Daido Moriyama

There isn’t much difference between photographing in color or black-and-white. - Daido Moriyama

For me, photography is not the endeavor to create a two-dimensional work of art, but by taking photo after photo, I come closer to truth and reality at the very intersection of the fragmentary nature of the world and my own personal sense of time. - Daido Moriyama

For me, photography is not a means by which to create beautiful art, but a unique way of encountering genuine reality at the point where the enormous fragments of the world — which I can never completely embrace by taking photos — coincide with my own inextricable predicament. - Daido Moriyama

If you were to ask me to define a photograph in a few words, I would say it is “a fossil of light and time.” - Daido Moriyama

A single photograph contains different images. - Daido Moriyama

If an image is good, it is brought back to life by the feelings of the viewer. - Daido Moriyama

When I take photographs, my body inevitably enters a trancelike state. Briskly weaving my way through the avenues, every cell in my body becomes as sensitive as radar, responsive to the life of the streets... If I were to give it words, I would say: “I have no choice... I have to shoot this... I can’t leave this place for another’s eyes... I have to shoot it... I have no choice.” An endless, murmuring refrain. - Daido Moriyama

Photography is the act of “fixing” time, not of “expressing” the world. The camera is an inadequate tool for extracting a vision of the world or of beauty. - Daido Moriyama

I wanted to go to the end of photography. - Daido Moriyama

Making a definitive declaration of intent or meaning kills the photograph. - Daido Moriyama

Most of what I want simply slips away like water flowing through a net, and always what remains are only vague, elusive fragments of images… that sink into countless strata in my mind. - Daido Moriyama

Photographs are pieces of the everlasting world—daily life—and fossils of light and time. They are also fragments of presentiment, inspiration, record, and memory about human beings and their history, as well as another language and world that becomes visible and intelligible through objectifying reality by means of cameras. They show us beauty and tenderness and also ugliness and cruelty now and then, not as the answer but always as a new question. I believe photographs to be pieces of an incomplete jigsaw puzzle. Which is why I have been and will be devoted to photography. - Daido Moriyama

The outside world is extremely fluid and mixed-up. Wrestling it into a “theme” is an impossibility. That mix in its totality cannot be photographed. - Daido Moriyama

I admit that photography can capture reality effectively and in detail, viewing a part of the world through its cold, scientific lens rather than with the eyes. But I prefer taking photographs without looking through the viewfinder. - Daido Moriyama

A photograph... isn’t conclusive the way language is. But that’s what makes photography interesting. There’s no point in making photographs that use language in an expository way. - Daido Moriyama

I do not try to find myself in what I “shoot,” but perhaps I want to see the position of the world I am in. - Daido Moriyama

Although photography is called an art, the photograph is not a tableau , born of nothing; it is not something unique, like a painting or a sculpture or the productions of the other arts. It is rather like an optical machine developed to such a point that nowadays even a cat can take photos. - Daido Moriyama

Language is a direct medium and communicates meaning and intention straight. A photograph, on the other hand, is subject to the viewer’s memory, aesthetics, and feelings—all of which affect how the photograph is seen. - Daido Moriyama

People steadily lose the landscapes they have accumulated. It’s not likely that anyone can faithfully recall how scenes appeared ten or twenty years ago... I think people continue to live in the present because we forget most every little thing. The remembrances that sneak up on a tired soul may sometimes stir us, but there is no tomorrow in that... Where in the world did the era beyond my memories and the people who lived in it disappear to? After time, which we can actually only see now in historical documents, there are memories we carry. After our time, what memories will be carried forth by the people who follow? - Daido Moriyama

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