The traditional difficulty of balancing the mechanical with the imaginative schools of photography still operates. In schools of photography meaningful art education is often lacking and on the strength of their technical ability alone students, deprived of a richer artistic training, are sent forth inculcated with the belief that they are creative photographers and artists. It is yet a fact that today, as in the past, the most inspiring and provocative works in photography come as much (and probably more) from those who are in the first place artists.
Has it led you to the conclusion that photography is an art ? Or it is simply a means of recording ? “I’m glad you asked that. I’ve been wanting to say this for years. Is cooking an art ? Is talking an art ? Is even painting an art ? It is artfulness that makes art, not the medium itself. Of course photography is an art – when it is in the hands of artists.”
Only recently serious research into the relationship between photography and art has taken place. Why has it been so long in coming ? “In some respects historical research is analogous with that of science. The bringing to light of factual material and the development of ideas is to a large extent cumulative.[…] But when artists themselves were, from about 1910, beginning to tear down the bastions protecting Art in its ivory tower, questioning the idea of Art with a capital ‘A’, photography was inevitably to assume a new stature both in the eyes of artists and the public, too."