What do we mean when we say ‘we can’t see the wood for the trees’? The expression marks the fact there are always different levels of potential awareness when we look at what is in front of us. For Polanyi, who coined the expression ‘tacit knowing’ or ‘tacit knowledge’ in his seminal work ‘The Tacit Dimension’ (1966), these multiple levels are a form of tacit knowing, a comprehensive entity. Knowledge for Polanyi is above all personal: an embodied act, and always mediated.
Recent developments in image-making techniques have resulted in a drastic blurring of the threshold between the world of the image and the real world. Immersive and interactive virtual environments (VEs) have enabled the production of pictures that elicit an unprecedented reality effect, creating in the perceiver a strong feeling of ‘being there’, namely of being incorporated into a quasi-real world. In doing so, they conceal their material mediateness (by simulating immediateness), their separateness (by aiming at unframedness), and their referentiality (by emphasizing presentness), paradoxically challenging their status as images, i.e. as icons: they are veritable ‘an-icons’.
What gives rise to a canon, or makes something iconic? How are those processes similar, and different?
Author Sophie Seita discusses her new book Provisional Avant-Gardes: Little Magazine Communities from Dada to Digital, Stanford University Press, 2019 For a long time now I’ve been fascinated by ‘little magazines’; that is, magazines that generally have a small budget, a small print-run, a short-ish life span, and a small audience due to their publication […]
Mischa Twitchin’s essay films engage with philosophical ideas through a carefully calibrated and playful combination of sound, pace, image, duration and text.
This essay-film performs the paradoxical simultaneities it addresses. As film-philosophy, its meaning depends on being watched several times. Or as Twitchin puts it, ‘we have to practice Brechtian watching of the other watchers’.