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Man Ray


  1. Ask me, if you like, to choose what I con sider the ten best pho­tographs I have pro duced until now, and here is my reply:
  2. An acci den tal snap shot of a shadow between two other care fully posed pic tures of a girl in a bathing suit.
  3. A close-up of an ant colony trans ported to the lab o ra tory, and illu mi nated by a flash.
  4. A twilight pic ture of the Empire State Build ing com pletely emp­tied of its tenants.
  5. A girl in neg ligee attire, call ing for help or merely attract ing attention.
  6. A black and white print obtained by plac ing a fun nel into the tray of devel op ing liq uid, and turn ing the light onto the sub merged paper.
  7. A dying leaf, its curled end des per ately claw ing the air.
  8. A close-up of an eye with the lashes well made up, a glass tear rest ing on the cheek.
  9. Frozen fire works on the night of a 14th of July in Paris.
  10. Photograph of a paint ing called, “The rope dancer accom pa nies her self with her shad ows. Man Ray 1916.”
  11. Photograph of a bro ken chair car ried home from Grif fith Park, Hol ly wood, at one of its bro ken legs the slip pers of Anna Pavlova.
  12. Do you doubt my sin cer ity? Really, if you imag ine that I value your opin ion enough to waste two min utes of my pre cious time try ing to con vince you, you are entirely mistaken.

— man ray, from the essay Photography Is Not Art, 1943

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