"There is something overwhelmingly appealing to me about containing the world in one of those rectangular shapes -- to live my life in one room. That is what a picture is -- a world contained in a frame. The camera is just a dark box in which the world projects its image.
Television is one of those rectangular shapes. I have long thought that the three networks are three national minds. That anyone, at almost anytime, can join his mind with theirs and think the same thoughts and have the same saleable fantasies. When I'm depressed, I often turn my mind over to that box.
Now, there is another image that has great power for me; and that is the ocean. It is the other symbol for space -- visually endless and open. But in a picture it draws a flat horizontal line across the frame and ends up represented by a rectangle.
I should say something about the palm trees. I guess part of the meaning is obvious. But they stand near the water; that they stand for tropical islands and paradises in the South Seas; for escape and freedom; and, I suppose for death. And about their shadows: Those shadows are the first rudiments of a photograph. A direct representation of the thing but not the thing itself. A collaboration between the object and the light to make a picture. An image of reality on a flat surface."
From the Introduction of AMERICAN IMAGES
Publisher: Palm Press
Edition: 1st Edition
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