For those who live neither with religious consolations about death nor with a sense of death (or of anything else) as natural, death is the obscene mystery, the ultimate affront, the thing that cannot be controlled. It can only be denied.
What is most beautiful in virile men is something feminine; what is most beautiful in feminine women is something masculine.
The taste for quotations (and for the juxtaposition of incongruous quotations) is a Surrealist taste.
Books are not only the arbitrary sum of our dreams, and our memory. They also give us the model of self-transcende nce.
Time eventually positions most photographs, even the most amateurish, at the level of art.
The painter constructs, the photographer discloses.
...to photograph is to frame, and to frame is to exclude.
The writer's first job is not to have opinions but to tell the truth... and refuse to be an accomplice of lies and misinformation. Literature is the house of nuance and contrariness against the voices of simplification.
The fear of becoming old is born of the recognition that one is not living now the life that one wishes.
The camera makes everyone a tourist in other people's reality, and eventually in one's own.
Intelligence is really a kind of taste: taste in ideas.
I'm only interested in people engaged in a project of self-transformation.
I urge you to be as impudent as you dare. BE BOLD, BE BOLD, BE BOLD.
Literature can train, and exercise, our ability to weep for those who are not us or ours.
To take a photograph is to participate in another person's mortality, vulnerability, mutability. Precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time's relentless melt.
Life is a movie; death is a photograph.
It hurts to love. It's like giving yourself to be flayed and knowing that at any moment the other person may just walk off with your skin.
What is the most beautiful in virile men is something feminine; what is most beautiful in feminine women is something masculine.
I am profoundly uncertain how to write. I know what I love and what I like, because it's a direct passionate response. But when I write, I'm very uncertain whether it's good enough. That is, of course, the writer's agony.
Whoever invented marriage was an ingenious tormentor. It is an institution committed to the dulling of the feelings. The whole point of marriage is repetition. The best it aims for is the creation of strong, mutual dependencies.
The photographer is an armed version of the solitary walker reconnoitering, stalking, cruising the urban inferno, the voyeuristic stroller who discovers the city as a landscape of voluptuous extremes. Adept of the joys of watching, connoisseur of empathy, the flÃ¢neur finds the world 'picturesque.
My idea of a writer: someone interested in everything.
I discovered that I am tired of being a person. Not just tired of being the person I was, but any person at all
To paraphrase several sages: Nobody can think and hit someone at the same time.
The life of the creative man is lead, directed and controlled by boredom. Avoiding boredom is one of our most important purposes.
Never worry about being obsessive. I like obsessive people. Obsessive people make great art
One can never ask anyone to change a feeling.
In place of a hermeneutics we need an erotics of art.
What I really wanted was every kind of life, and the writer's life seemed the most inclusive.
No 'we' should be taken for granted when the subject is looking at other people's pain.
Kindness, kindness, kindness. I want to make a New Year's prayer, not a resolution. I'm praying for courage.
To photograph is to appropriate the thing photographed. It means putting oneself into a certain relation to the world that feels like knowledge-and therefore, like power.
To be an artist or a writer is to be this weird thing - a hand worker in an era of mass production.
The only interesting answers are those that destroy the questions.
Ours is a culture based on excess, on overproduction; the result is a steady loss of sharpness in our sensory experience. All the conditions of modern life - its material plenitude, its sheer crowdedness - conjoin to dull our sensory faculties
Self-censorship, the most important and most successful form of censorship, is rampant. Debate is identified with dissent, which is in turn identified with disloyalty. There is a widespread feeling that, in this new, open-ended emergency, we may not be able to 'afford' our traditional freedoms.
Self-respect. It would make me lovable. And it's the secret to good sex.
Nothing is mysterious, no human relation. Except love.
It is not the position, but the disposition.
I want to be able to be alone, to find it nourishing - not just a waiting.