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THE SEMIOTIC SQUARE

March 4, 2015

Invented by French semiotician A.J. Greimas, the Semiotic Square is one of the favorite intellectual toys of theory-minded art critics. In a legendary essay, "Sculpture in the Expanded Field," Rosalind Krauss used it to chart the different manifestations of postmodern sculpture as reactions to the opposition "landscape" and "architecture," though she uses a quirky version of the device; a much more satisfying and orthodox example is the way Hal Foster used the Square to illustrate the different positions within Russian Constructivism, as outgrowths of the opposition between "Art" and "Production."

Basically, the Semiotic Square is a way of visually representing a matrix of possible relationships generated by a given opposition. The idea is relatively simple: Any principal opposition between contrary terms -- between "a" and "b" -- can be expanded to include a secondary pair of "contradictory" terms, "non-a" and "non-b." These contradictory terms have a natural relation of affinity with the respective contrary terms of the original binary, thus allowing you to form a kind of map of potential relationships within a given presupposed opposition. (You get, in Krauss words, "a quaternary field which both mirrors the original opposition and at the same time opens it.")

http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/reviews/davis/art-and-social-media8-4-10.asp

 

Escape from the Image, Deleuze's Image Ontolagy, Martin Schwab

October 28, 2010
The Brain is the Screen, Gregory Flaxman
 
 Escape from the Image, Deleuze's Image Ontolagy, Martin Schwab
Into the Breach.  Between The Movement -Image and the Time-Image, Angelo Restivo


Continue reading...
 

History is photography: the afterimage of Walter Benjamin

April 5, 2010
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2479/is_n2_v26/ai_21187359/?tag=content;col1

History is photography: the afterimage of Walter Benjamin

AfterimageSept-Oct, 1998 by Jeannene M. PrzyblyskiIn a New York Times Book Review essay on Jay Parini's 1997 historical novel about the last days of Walter Benjamin, Benjamin's Crossing, the critic made annoyed reference to Benjamin's "leonine status in the eyes of many academics today" He complained that despite Benjamin's failure as both an academic a...


Continue reading...
 

I'm using this sometimes to keep bits I have come across, things I have been reading online or other resources I want to come back to.  

comments are always welcome

especially if you start linking any interesting theory/comment/artists related thinking to my series works :-)

Mass Observation - Recording everyday life in Britain

The Original Mass Observation

Founders of Mass Observation
Charles Madge and Tom Harrisson
Book cover of First Year's Work by Mass Observation project
A publication by Mass Observation

The three founders and a strange coincidence

Three young men, part of a small group of like-minded friends, are credited with establishing Mass Observation. The origins resulted from a strange coincidence.

Early in 1937, Harrisson's one and only published poem appeared in the New Statesman on the same page as a letter from Madge and Jennings, in which they outlined their London-based project to encourage a national panel of volunteers to reply to regular questionnaires on a variety of matters. Interested by the similarity in aims to his own current anthropological study of the British, Harrisson contacted Madge and Jennings.

An anthropology of ourselves

Within the space of a month, the two projects, related in their ideals, although different in the techniques they employed to gather information, joined together under the title of Mass Observation. Their aim, stated in a further letter to the New Statesman, was to create an "anthropology of ourselves" - a study of the everyday lives of ordinary people in Britain.

Observers and diarists

Harrisson and a team of observers continued their study of life and people in Bolton (the Worktown Project), while Madge remained in London to organise the writing of the volunteer panel.

In Bolton, a team of paid investigators went into a variety of public situations: meetings, religious occasions, sporting and leisure activities, in the street and at work, and recorded people's behaviour and conversation in as much detail as possible. The material they produced is a varied documentary account of life in Britain.

The National Panel of Diarists was composed of people from all over Britain who either kept diaries or replied to regular open-ended questionnaires sent to them by the central team of Mass-Observers.

From social issues to market research

Although Jennings and then Madge moved on, Mass Observation continued to operate throughout the Second World War and into the early 1950s, producing a series of books about their work as well as thousands of reports. Gradually the emphasis shifted away from social issues towards consumer behaviour. In 1949, Mass Observation was registered as a limited company.

See our publications for further reading about the history of the Archive.

 

 Website by CommunitySites 

THE SEMIOTIC SQUARE

March 4, 2015

Invented by French semiotician A.J. Greimas, the Semiotic Square is one of the favorite intellectual toys of theory-minded art critics. In a legendary essay, "Sculpture in the Expanded Field," Rosalind Krauss used it to chart the different manifestations of postmodern sculpture as reactions to the opposition "landscape" and "architecture," though she uses a quirky version of the device; a much more satisfying and orthodox example is the way Hal Foster used the Square to illustrate the different positions within Russian Constructivism, as outgrowths of the opposition between "Art" and "Production."

Basically, the Semiotic Square is a way of visually representing a matrix of possible relationships generated by a given opposition. The idea is relatively simple: Any principal opposition between contrary terms -- between "a" and "b" -- can be expanded to include a secondary pair of "contradictory" terms, "non-a" and "non-b." These contradictory terms have a natural relation of affinity with the respective contrary terms of the original binary, thus allowing you to form a kind of map of potential relationships within a given presupposed opposition. (You get, in Krauss words, "a quaternary field which both mirrors the original opposition and at the same time opens it.")

http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/reviews/davis/art-and-social-media8-4-10.asp

 

Escape from the Image, Deleuze's Image Ontolagy, Martin Schwab

October 28, 2010
The Brain is the Screen, Gregory Flaxman
 
 Escape from the Image, Deleuze's Image Ontolagy, Martin Schwab
Into the Breach.  Between The Movement -Image and the Time-Image, Angelo Restivo


Continue reading...
 

History is photography: the afterimage of Walter Benjamin

April 5, 2010
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2479/is_n2_v26/ai_21187359/?tag=content;col1

History is photography: the afterimage of Walter Benjamin

AfterimageSept-Oct, 1998 by Jeannene M. PrzyblyskiIn a New York Times Book Review essay on Jay Parini's 1997 historical novel about the last days of Walter Benjamin, Benjamin's Crossing, the critic made annoyed reference to Benjamin's "leonine status in the eyes of many academics today" He complained that despite Benjamin's failure as both an academic a...


Continue reading...
 

Something New!

Lytro Launches to Transform Photography with $50M in Venture Funds (TCTV)
Sarah Lacy
Jun 21, 2011

Love photos but utterly bored by wave after waveof iPhone photo sharing apps? Lytro is the company for you. This is also the company for anyone who thinks Silicon Valley has fallen into a rut of innovation-less posing. And it’s the company for anyone who complains that the Valley is more about media and marketing than brass-knuckles, hardcore technology. This is the company that jaded, cranky, rap-lyric quoting investor Ben Horowitz says, “blew my brains to bits.”

In short, Lytro is developing a new type of camera that dramatically changes photography for the first time since the 1800s. Rather than just capturing one plane of light, it captures the entire light field around a picture, all in one shot taken on a single device. A light field includes every beam of light in every direction at every point in time. Experimentation in this field started in the mid-1990s at Stanford with 100 cameras in one room. Lytro’s innovation is making it small enough to fit in your pocket. Really.

As a result you can refocus photos after the fact, wiggle around the orientation, and even show the photos in 3D. Get excited, Jason Kincaid, because it’s not too far away from those 3D moving photographs in the Harry Potter movies. The company has raised $50 million so far from NEAK9 VenturesGreylock Partners and Andreessen Horowitz.

Check it out in this photo below by Richard Koci Hernandez. Click around to see Elvis come into focus in the foreground:

Here’s some of what Horowitz wrote on his blog about the company:

“People often refer to taking a picture as capturing the moment, but conventional photography does not really capture the moment. It captures one angle, one set of light, and one focus of the moment. If you are a professional photographer, you might capture the best parts of the moment. If you are someone like me, you most certainly will not. With Ren’s light field camera, you actually capture the moment or at least all of the light that visually represents the moment.

Once you have captured the moment, you can go back at any time and get the picture that you want.

Essentially, you can take the picture you wish you would have taken after the fact. If you are used to the old paradigm, it’s like travelling backwards through time.”

Of course there are big risks with any business this jaw-droppingly innovative. Will they be able to get the price point low enough that people will buy the camera? Right now, the closest Ng will commit on price is somewhere between north of $1 and less than $10,000. That’s a pretty broad ballpark. We won’t be able to see the devices until the also vague “sometime this year.” An equally important question is whether the user experience be as simple as the company claims.

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