Roland Barthes
[Writer, critic, and theorist, b. 1915, Cherbourg, d. 1980, Paris.]

 In front of the lens, I am at the same time: the one I think I am, the one I want others to think I am, the one the photographer thinks I am, and the one he makes use of to exhibit his art. In other words, I am a strange action: I do not stop imitating myself, and because of this, each time I am (or let myself be) photographed, I invariably suffer from a sensation of inauthenticity, sometimes of imposture (comparable to certain nightmares). In terms of image-repertoire, the photograph (the one I intend) represents that very subtle moment when, to tell the truth, I am neither subject nor object but a subject who feels he is becoming an object: I then experience a micro-version of death (of parenthesis): I am truly becoming a specter. 

Martha Rosler
[Artist, b. 1943, Brooklyn, New York, lives in New York.]

 Photography [can] be seen as a system of representation that you bring to bear on other systems. 

Philip Larkin
[Poet and writer, b. 1922, Coventry, England, d. 1985, London.]

 It was your severed image that grew sweeter,
That floated, wing-stiff, focused in the sun
Along uncertainty and gales of shame
Blown out before I slept. Now you are one
I dare not think alive: only a name
That chimes occasionally, as a belief
Long since embedded in the static past. 

Henry Miller
[Writer, b. 1890, New York, d. 1980, Pacific Palisades, California.]

 [The photographer] is like a secretive insect who awaits for the appearance of some unknown epidemic before commencing his ravages. He is stubborn and elusive. He does the banal thing in order to hide his monstrous eccentricities. He has the eye of a ghoul, the indifference of a leper, the calm of a Buddha. He is insatiable. He is a monster—the most amiable, the most courteous, the most raffiné—but a monster. (On Brassaï, who he lastingly dubbed “the eye of Paris.”) 

Edward Curtis
[Photographer and ethnographer, b. 1868, Whitewater, Wisconsin, d. 1952, Los Angeles.]

 The thought which this picture is meant to convey is that Indians as a race, already shorn of their tribal strength and stripped of their primitive dress, are passing into the darkness of an unknown future. Feeling that the picture expresses so much of the thought that inspired the entire work, the author has chosen it as the first of the series. (Photo caption) 

Christian Metz
[Writer and film theorist, b. 1931, Béziers, France, lives in France.]

 The person who has been photographed, not the total person, is dead, dead for having been seen. 

Yousuf Karsh
[Photographer, b. 1908, Mardin, Armenia, d. 2002, Boston, Massachusetts.]

 I try to photograph people’s spirits and thoughts. As to the soul-taking by the photographer, I don’t feel I take away, but rather that the sitter and I give to each other. It becomes an act of mutual participation. 

Jean Baudrillard
[Writer and theorist, b. 1929, Reims, France, d. 2007, Paris.]

 Every photographed object is merely the trace left behind by the disappearance of all the rest. It is an almost perfect crime, an almost total resolution of the world, which merely leave the illusion of a particular object shining forth, the image of which then becomes an impenetrable enigma. 
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