Fotograf Magazine

Photography and Visual Experience

We live, as is oft repeated, in an era of dispirited faith in the image, which should mean roughly this: the era of the image has a paradoxical culmination, provided one can liquidate faith in the image as an authentic expression, a faith in the image’s authenticity. Should we look around ourselves, we very often cannot but notice the extent to which that what we see is reformatted by images that are circulated by all old and new media. So we can only with difficulty avoid the feeling that images are here sooner than reality. However it is the images that can be manipulated, indeed completely constructed, which oftentimes do not even feign their artificialness, instead they often playfully refer to it themselves. This is the state that is very nicely summarised in the small anecdote about the woman, who proudly responds to her neighbour, who is commending her child: “Yes, little Eva is pretty, but what if you first saw her photographs!”[ref]Richard Kearney, The Wake of Imagination, Routledge 1988, s. 2.[/ref] This anecdote is also interesting in that it indicates how the photographic image drawn into that vortex-blending and interchanging image and reality. Even though the (photo) image – already because of its technological essence – should on the contrary be a guarantee of a clear cut border between the fictitious (constructed, imaginary) and the real one. A photograph is after all an image that a thing drew.

To read the entire article you must log in.

Log in