photographed images – once

Yes, it is still around – the problem of the image / representation … It is been some time that digitization was set on one level together with the loss of indexicality. It’s become more complex as the image is still around, still feeds the instances of imagination, but as L.U. Marks states ‘digitization has come to coding’ one could say it is necessary to know how to read images. The complexity of the image hardly can be described only by the technologies involved in creation and transmission. Latour defines that the image itself cannot be taken as representation any longer, that it is the flow which makes imaginary relevant:

Obviously, there is something in the way flows of images create access to Beauty, Truth and Piety that has been missed by idol-breakers over the ages. …. If you stick to them, images are dangerous, blasphemous, idolatrous; but they are safe, innocent, indispensable if you learn how to jump from one image to the next. “Truth is image, but there is no image of Truth.” (link)

I might not totally agree but can support the concept of flow as a very important one – thus it might be equally be influenced trough narrative strategies of various kinds and more than before touching various sensual attentions …
newsgrit published a review ‘on representation’ by looking at the photographs of Arbus and Clark why if so then photography might be more likely related to the art of looking than to any represenative mode…

The mistake many make is to confuse photo images with reality. They are representations. They are constructed narratives; they are fictions. We, artists and viewers, if it is our bent, find the things that stand for or communicate what we want to express or, let’s face it, what our unconscious may need to tell us or others.

Personally I am extremely reluctant to photograph people, even people I know. But if I were telling a story through images I wouldn’t hesitate one minute to use friends or strangers as models. Is it so hard to believe that Arbus’s so-called freaks or Clark’s speed-freak teenagers are actors, or found images that stand-in for the photographer? Or that these freaks and speed-freaks are the subjects of voyeuristic fictions that allow unimpeded scopophilia? It is ultimately not what you are looking at that is important, but the looking itself.

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