An untitled photograph by William Eggleston, dated circa 1977.
An untitled photograph by William Eggleston, dated circa 1977.
An untitled photograph by William Eggleston, dated circa 1977.
"It doesn't come out worth a damn if you're not having a good time doing it."
The Telegraph, interview by Lucy Davies
March 11, 2019

"There are three things viewers usually note when confronted with Eggleston's photographs. First, their ordinary subject matter. Second, their undertow of menace or morbidity. Third, their vibrant, enriched colour, which he achieved via a printing process called 'dye transfer'.

In his pictures, he isolates things we would not commonly look twice at, such as an open freezer, ceiling cables trailing towards a light bulb, or heated hair rollers on top of a lavatory. Simple, you think. Then: too simple, as if maybe you are being tricked.

From then, the picture begins to unfold and unfold again. It teems with possible narratives and questions.…‘Everyone, including me, has at one time or another wanted to do that sort of Eggleston picture, but never succeeded," Eggleston's friend and fellow photographer Juergen Teller … has observed. ‘It's totally about how he sees things in his mind's eye.’

[…]

As he [Eggleston] once told [music journalist Stanley] Booth: ‘It doesn't come out worth a damn if you're not having a good time doing it.’"

Read the full interview in The Telegraph

Image: William Eggleston, Untitled, c. 1977 (detail)