There was an interesting discussion on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row tonight about a new exhibition of photographs…

Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2013

The four artists shortlisted for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2013 are the artist duo Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Mishka Henner, Chris Killip and Cristina De Middel.

A selection of the shortlisted artists’ work is on exhibition at The Photographers’ Gallery from 19th April – 30th June.

One of the photographs was displaying “images”  that he had “taken” from Google StreetView. much of the discussion focused on whether you could call yourself a photographer of you didn’t actually take the photographs yourself. My instinctive reaction is no. But then I started to think about it…

In this particular case the exhibition consisted of old photographs of street scenes put together with and alongside the same scenes but from Google StreetView. Why, I began to wonder is this any different to the writer who borrows and takes from and references old stories and retellings and then weaving together to  make something new. Why are they still a writer but the photographer isn’t? I don’t have an answer for it… in my mind they are still unquestionably an artist but that a photographer does need to take photographs.

( listen to the episode )