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RICHARD MISRACH
[b. 1949] American photographer
The desert … may serve better as the backdrop for the problematic relationship between man and the environment. - Richard Misrach

To me, the work I do is a means of interpreting unsettling truths, of bearing witness, and of sounding an alarm. The beauty of formal representation both carries an affirmation of life and subversively brings us face to face with news from our besieged world. - Richard Misrach

..despite the limitations and problems inherent to photographic representation (and especially the representation of politics), it remains for me the most powerful and engaging medium today—one central to the development of cultural dialogue. - Richard Misrach

Perhaps the real impulse that eventually translated into picturing things comes from my father’s wild enthusiasm for everything observed: “That’s the most beautiful sunset I have ever seen,” “That is the most beautiful tree I have ever seen,” and so forth. I nicknamed him hyperbolic Bob. - Richard Misrach

Probably the strongest criticism leveled at my work is that I’m making “poetry of the holocaust.” But I’ve come to believe that beauty can be a very powerful conveyor of difficult ideas. It engages people when they might otherwise look away. - Richard Misrach

Every photograph is a measure of time. Perhaps each can even be considered a metaphysical time-stamp of sorts. - Richard Misrach

In spite of recent trends towards fabricating photographic narratives, I find, more than ever, traditional photographic capture—the “discovery” of found narratives—deeply compelling. - Richard Misrach

The very act of representation has been so thoroughly challenged in recent years by postmodern theories that it is impossible not to see the flaws everywhere, in any practice of photography. Traditional genres in particular—journalism, documentary studies, and fine-art photography—have become shells, or forms emptied of meaning. - Richard Misrach

I am not unaware that I have the mindset, as contradictory as it may sound, to discover in the world what I am in fact looking for. Perhaps the best pictures are a seamless hybrid of discovery and construction. - Richard Misrach

I love the fact that a photograph is always open to interpretation—there is no fixed meaning. - Richard Misrach

I think this is the most exciting time in the history of photography. Technology is expanding what photographers can do, like the microscope and the telescope expanded what scientists could do. - Richard Misrach

I’m not interested in victim photography. Photographing people suffering and putting it on a museum wall is too weird. - Richard Misrach

Whatever else a photograph may be about, it is always about time. - Richard Misrach

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