There are two ways that the idea of the photographic object could be interpreted.
1. It is simply a photograph of an object. This is akin to the still life which was much loved by classical artists, such as VanMeer, or Rembrant.
2. When the image created becomes in some ways the photographic object it's self, which I think is a much more interesting notion to consider.
The classical idea of the photographic object is that of a still life. Objects such as food, books, candles cloth and many other items have become the cliché of the still life. The idea of a still life, as a genre in art, particularly as an accurate depiction of the object gained popularity in the 17th century, particularly in the Netherlands.