occurance of the ‘other time’

In his talk ‘Heterochronia*: Projections of Temporality’ Thomas Y. Levin pointed out some interesting issues occuring through the increasing hybridity of the image provoked by the synthetical processes of the digital. A short simplification could put it the way that through the shift of the photochemical to digital the traditionaly assumed indexicality of the shot image moves and inherents now the logic of the temporal – leading to new rhetorics of ‘live’ (transmissions).
Thus it is just consequent that as much as the ‘surveillanvce image’ has to be considered as the ‘real‘ real-time image the semiotic anxiety of the contemporary temporal condition of the hybridity of images increases. Semiotic heterogenity turns the index into a pure figure: indexicality becomes a rhetorical iconic figure of semiotics. In short – indexicality changes its rhetorics towards the temporal – or in the words of Levin:

… indexicality is in fact not in the least destroyed by the advent of the digital, but simply changes its semiotic trappings. The indexical survives, for example, by shifting to the domain of the temporal. Paradigmatic for this new economy of temporal indexicality is the rhetorics of so-called “real time.” Indeed it is the fascination with a rhetorics of real time as a displaced photo-chemical indexicality which is one of the hallmarks, so I will attempt to demonstrate, of the remarkable proliferation of a new “aesthetics of surveillance” evident – alongside the abovementioned rhetorics of indexical compensation – in a wide range of current cultural practices, from contemporary art and music to recent work in cinema, television and cyberspace. …

*Heterochronia (in med. terms) means the origin or development of organs or tissues at an unusual time or out of the normal sequence. Heterochronia comes from the Greek word “heteros” meaning “other,” and the Greek word “chronous” meaning “time.” Put the words together and you get “other time.”

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