seeing sound … and touch

along the process of thinking about sound I came back to touch and the interweaving moment of the audiovisual ….

Cartoons reveal by exaggeration the sonoro-tactile pathos of cinema. Cinema is driven, not by lip-synched dialogue, but by certain violent sound-tactations, six grades of which may be distinguished: the kiss, the punch, the cut, the shot, the crash and the explosion. Contemporary cinema, especially action-cinema, is conspicuously full of Deleuze’s sound-images, images which have been, so to speak, moulded or penetrated by sound; imagings of violent sound agitating, blasting holes in, bursting out of the ideal, embattled “dream-screen” (Lewin 1946). I have elsewhere (“Sounding Out Film”) described the ‘mutative commixture of substance’ of which so much cinema sound seems to consist. But the very tactility which cinema promises, the ecstatic collapse of projective seeing into loud, blinded touch, preserves that reference to the skin (the sounding tympanum), even as it dissolves the film – the pellicule, as it is in French – that is the support of sight. … from here

update 09, november: a review from september 2004 on Laura Mark’s touch

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