“…I saw that as a photographer I wasn’t at all that interested in events. I was and am far more engaged by the states of being the lead to events, by the conditions of society rather than the climatic outcomes of those conditions. (…) I was amazed and intrigued and drawn by the ability of the photograph to hold something of existence. It continues to amaze me that the photograph has within it a ‘piece’ of external reality, and however many generations of reproduction might be made, something of that original reality remains embedded in the image. It’s magic.”
David Goldblatt interviewed by Okwu Enwezor, 2001
"Embedded in the bricks, mud, stone, wood, plastic, steel and concrete of all the structures in South Africa are choices we and our forebears have taken. No structure, no building, road, monument, township, resettlement camp, dorp or city can be, but for the choices that gave rise to it and others that are a condition of its continued existence.
For as long as a building or structure is, it may ‘tell’ something of the needs, imperatives and values of those who put it there, of those who used it, and of the ideologies upon which their beliefs and lives may have been contingent. The choices, and thus too the values from which they derive: all of these enter the very grit of the structures and are often deducible from it. When buildings cease to exist as coherent structures, their remains or footprints may yet be eloquent not only of what ruined them but of what may follow.”
David Goldblatt, Structures, 1987