Cindy Sherman
[Artist, b. 1954, Glen Ridge, New Jersey, lives in New York.]

 Once I set up, the camera starts clicking, then I just start to move and watch how I move in the mirror. It’s not like I’m method acting or anything. I don’t feel that I am that person. I may be thinking about a certain story or situation, but I don’t become her. There’s this distance. The image in the mirror becomes her—the image the camera gets on the film. And the one thing I’ve always known is that the camera lies. 

Shelby Lee Adams
[Photographer, b. 1950, Hazard, Kentucky, lives in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.]

 [My] portraits are, in a way, self-portraits that represent a long autobiographical exploration of creativity, imagination, vision, repulsion and salvation. My greatest fear as a photographer is to look into the eyes of my subject and not see my own reflection. 

Paolo Pellegrin
[Photographer, b. 1964, Rome, lives in Paris.]

 I believe photography – like many other things one does in life – is the exact expression of who you are at a given moment. 

Daniel Boorstin
[Historian and scholar, b. 1914, Atlanta, Georgia, d. 2004, Washington, D.C.]

 As individuals and as a nation, we now suffer from social narcissism. The beloved echo of our ancestors, the virgin America, has been abandoned. We have fallen in love with our own image, with images of our making, which turn out to be images of ourselves. 

Lee Friedlander
[Photographer, b. 1934, Aberdeen, Washington, lives in New York.]

 At first, my presence in my photos was fascinating and disturbing. But as time passed and I was more a part of other ideas in my photos, I was able to add a giggle to those feelings. 

Cindy Sherman
[Artist, b. 1954, Glen Ridge, New Jersey, lives in New York.]

 Everyone thinks [that my photographs] are self-portraits, but they are not meant to be. If I photograph myself it’s because I can push my own limits to the extreme. I can make from each shot a work as heavy, as clumsy or as stupid as I want. 

Arthur Danto
[Writer, b. 1924, Ann Arbor, Michigan, d. 2013, New York.]

 It takes a certain suspension of squeamishness to see a Polaroid that Mapplethorpe devoted to his own engorged penis, held erect like a blunt club by means of a leather loop around his testicles, in the same aesthetic terms as the Photo-Secessionist masterpieces ... But that was the paradox of Mapplethorpe’s achievement—to show what one can barely stand to look at in photographs so beautiful one can hardly takes one’s eye off them. 

Orlan (Mireille Suzanne Francette Porte)
[Artist, b. 1947, St. Etienne, France, lives in Ivry-sur-Seine, France.]

 Being a narcissist isn’t easy when the question is not of loving your own image, but of recreating the self through deliberate acts of alienation. 
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