(Renoir, Girl Looking Into Mirror, 1912)
She has not even seen me. I am standing at the far end of the counter by myself. A mirror hangs on the opposite wall; she does not reflect it, but the mirror reflects her. How faithfully it has caught her picture, like a humble slave who show his devotion by his faithfulness, a slave for whom she indeed has significance, but who means nothing to her, who indeed dares to catch her, but not to embrace her. Unhappy mirror, the can indeed seize her image, but not herself! Happy mirror, which cannot hide her image in its secret depths, hide it from the whole world, but on the contrary must betray it to other, as now to me. What agony, if men were like that! And are there not many people who are like that, who own nothing except in the moment when they show it to others, who grasp only the surface, not the essence, who lose everything if this appears, just as this mirror would lose her image were they by a single breath to betray her heart to it?