1 Photography and Art

It cannot be too plainly stated that it is quite unimportant whether photography produces “art” or not. Its own basic laws, not the opinions of art critics, will provide the only valid measure of its future worth.

LASZLO MOHOLY-NAGY

Most of us have an intuitive notion of what art is, although to venture a formal definition for art is likely to arouse contention. Consider that when we define what qualifies as art, we also implicitly declare what does not qualify as art. With something so broad and subjective as to include, among many other things, paintings and autographed urinals; ancient glyphs and computerized holograms; great cathedrals and Shakespearean plays; woven rugs and calligraphy; pottery and interpretive dance; ...

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