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2015-2016 I Semester: Ludger Schwarte: Thresholds in image perception: consciousness, medium, picture  

Doctoral School in Philosophy and Human Sciences

Academic Year 2015-176

 

Thresholds in image perception: consciousness, medium, picture

Teacher: Ludger Schwarte (Kunstakademie Düsseldorf)

 

6 and 8 October 2015

Dipartimento di Filosofia, Sala Seminari 

 

Abstract

The seminar seeks to discuss recent developments in German philosophy of images. It starts with a re-reading of the classical text of Edmund Husserl on “Image-Consciousness”, whose distinction between image-thing, image-object, image-subject will serve as a basis for the following discussion. Husserl is convinced that what makes an image is the subjects capacity to grasp form relations on a surface and form an image-consciousness. Opposed to this subjective view is Friedrich Kittler’s theory of optical media, who stresses, how the view onto the world is channeled by optical technologies. Third, Lambert Wiesing underlines the importance of Husserl's phenomenological approach, yet takes up from media theory the insistence that functioning media allow us to see the same pictures, wherever we are. All three positions describe pictures as a transparent infrastructure through which or by which something can be shown. I will oppose this view as media-metaphysics and propose a theory of the picture as a thing, describing the design features which sketches, paintings, films, videos, statues and the like share. Without a correct analysis of the image-thing, we are unable to describe the threshold between normal and image perception.

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