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The Camera as a Subject

DOUBLE EXPOSURE: The Camera as a Subject

“For me, the camera is a sketch book, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity.”
- Henri Cartier-Bresson

The camera is an apparatus utilized for a higher art, much like a pen to a writer, a brush to a painter, or a guitar to a musician. These instruments become extensions of the artist, transforming shapeless energy into a physical manifestation of divine inspiration; moments frozen in time, words transcending generations, compositions reflecting the light of an era and chords echoing the yearnings of a movement. Each creation conveys its own power, a power that needs a conductor through which to communicate.

Essential tools of the trade, these conductors hover just behind the curtain, projecting the combined energies of their technical function with the essence of the artist’s vision. But what happens when the curtain is pushed aside and the instrument behind the art is revealed?



Now, the documenter becomes documented. Throughout these images, cameras are captured by cameras, revealing the very instruments that birthed the first experience of physical self-preservation. From early stereoscopes - devices used for viewing two identical, separate images, allowing for left and right-eye views of the same scene, creating a single three-dimensional image - to early photo galleries, mobile photo wagons, the first studio cameras supported by tripods and rare behind-the-scenes Hollywood movie stills, visual preservation takes on an entirely different perspective through the ultimate reversal of roles. These early images do more than merely record the recorder - they capture history as history itself is being captured, creating a rare moment of timelessness.

About Our Collection:

Documented throughout these carte-de-visites, cabinet cards, stereoviews and vintage film photographs are cameras in their most primitive forms. These images transport us, allowing us to bear witness to the advent of photography, while, in the same flash, granting us insight into society’s awe as they explore these powerful instruments of preservation for the first time.
So rarely do we get a glimpse behind the lens, and we at JG Autographs are honored to have the ability to cast the curtain aside, providing this unique perspective into not only the birth of a completely new medium, but the ways in which we, as a society, embraced, nurtured and shared it. 


Explore Our Collection:
Motion Picture Production
Motion Picture Production
Vintage 8x10 Photograph
Motion Picture Production
Fantastic glimpse into the cinematic workings behind the camera of major motion picture productions
JG Autographs