User:Emily/Self-Evaluation trimester IV

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Docudrama - Documentality
Derrida (1972): social objects = inscribed acts. Ferraris (2005; 2009): Actually physical and ideal objects exist independently from every recording, as independently from there being humanity.
The theory of documentality proposed by Maurizio Ferraris (2005) aims to solve these problems by arguing that social objects are always recordings of social acts. For the theory of documentality, the constitutive rule of social reality is "Object = Inscribed Act", where "inscribed" is equal to "recorded".
Documents thus often assume the character of catalysts for actions; they are supposed to first create the reality that is documented in them. From this, however, it cannot be derived – and this is the problem of Foucault's concept of truth politics – that every concept of truth is contingent and relative.

Documentary film, became part of the specialized vocabulary in the late 20s (in German press, inspired by innovative Soviet examples). It first appeared as feature-length auteur film in the late twenties in capitalist countries, where they served as "counter-information".

Identity - Representation - Post-Representation
the double meaning of representation ("depict", "stand for") radical substitution of the interwinded concepts of identity and representation with the pair of terms difference and repetition.
Representation is the use of signs that stand in for and take the place of something else. Signs are arranged in order to form semantic constructions and express relations. Deleuze's repetition: "difference without a concept"; Repetition is thus reliant on difference more deeply than it is opposed. Further, profound repetition will be characterized by profound difference.

-"documentality" by HIto
- "Difference and Repetition" by Gilles Deleuze
-"Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote" by Borges (quintessential repetition, the repetition of Cervantes in Menard by Pierre Menard )

Part IV

"Circulationism" vs "Productivism" Productivism(the Soviet avant-garde of the twentieth century): art should enter production and the factory
Circulationism: it is not about the art of making an image, but of posr-producing, launching, and accelerating it. It is about the public relations of images across social networks, about advertisement and alienation, and about being as suavely vacuous as possible.
Thomas Elsaesser: amilitrary-industrial-entertainment complex
Networked space is itself a medium, or whatever one might call a medium's promiscuous, posthumous state today. In this fuid media space, images and sounds morph across different bodies and carriers, acquiring more and more glitches and bruises along the way. Moreover, it is not only form that migrates across screens, but also functions. Computation and connectivity permeate matter and render it as raw material for algorithmic prediction.
Reality itself is postproduced and scripted, affect rendered as after-effect.Far from being opposites across an unbridgeable chasm, image and world are in many cases just versions of each other.The tools of postproduction: editing, color correction, filtering, cutting, and so on are not aimed at achieving representation. Link:

Part III

The Double

Part II

The notes here are mainly about comment culture

Geert Lovink's Treatise on comment culture

An Archaeology of Commentary

Commentary: What we see are waves of intensities grouped around the platform of the day.
J. Assmann: (devoted to the earliest forms of canonisation) Once a text is fixed, and nothing is added or changed, can a piece of writing become a "founding text" to define certain practices or procedures(such as law)?
What defines early text is not its material storage but the transmission of commitment
With the production of annotated, completed works in the nineteenth century there was a move from comments toward genesis and criticism.
According to Bodo Plachta, writing in the 2009 "commentary" issue of the journal Zeitschbrift für Ideengeschichte, the move to include commentary occurred around 1970. It is also Plachta who points to the relevance of comments outside of academia, the space without limits in digital media, and how easy it is to make changes.
Markus Krajewski and Cornelia Vismann stress the temporary, lively aspect of comments in their essayComments, Code and Codification.
What distinguishes comments from text is their unfinished nature.
To better understand internet commentary, we could also further explore its oral background. In a heated debate we often no longer precisely hear what others say. This might also be the case when we skim texts and browse through comments.
Western discourse production: once separated and codified
What is stalled within the legal system has been taken up by the computer industry as a way to reintroduce comments as a productive element in software production
Request for Comments(RFC) procedure of the Internet Engineering Task Force(IETF)--(the feedack loop of comments produces network code or protocol as Alex Galloway refers to it)
interwovenness of code and comment -- Donald Knuth's "literate programming" -- highly closed environments such as Facebook where next to nothing can be programmed but where users are constantly commenting on each other. Seen from the current chaotic situation, codifiers who pick and choose the best comments and then take these to the next level of the discourse as krajewski and Vismann describe in reference to the jurist Tribonian(500-547 BC) -- who used this method to revise the legal code of the Roman Empire
Up to the time of Hegel, commenting on classic texts belonged to the philosophical repertoire. Writing comments declined as scholarly activity in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and, until the uptake of the internet, was only practiced by legal scholars, theologians, and editors of collected works.

Beyond Taming the Commentators

Today's comment culture is a product of the techno-secular age. Its aim is an amoral form of participation, designed with the intention of checking what citizens are up to and to what subjects they respond...We do not care so much what the text precisely "say" but what the wider ecology is. Instead of a close reading, we practice intuitive scanning.
Content is no longer judges in a vacuum but automatically read within the political, cultural, and media context in which it operates. It is the media system of texts, moving images, and lived media experiences that is being stored and reproduced through re-use and re-mixing.
commentary is becoming a built-in feature of all communication deceives and services
on what design concepts could a rich, diverse, and controversial comment culture be based? What would a contemporary text curatorship look like?

Designing Mass Hermeneutics

Leo Strauss's Persecution and the Art of Writing. -- gives rise to a peculiar technique of writing and therewith to a peculiar type of literature, in which the truth about all crucial things is presented exclusively between the lines.
regain control over collaborative forms of online meaning production --"that literature is addressed, not to all readers, but to trustworthy and intelligent readers only"(elitism)"it has all the advantages of private communication without having its greatest disadvantage- that it reaches only the writer's acquaintance" -- what we could do is translate Strauss's axioms into code.
In every society the production of discourse is at once controlled, selected, organised and redistributed by a certain number of procedures whose role is to ward off its powers and dangers, to gain mastery over its chance events, to evade its ponderous, formidable materiality.
what limitations does web 2.0 lay on textual exchange?
every interpretation reveals a profound intention, that of overcoming distance and cultural differences -- Paul Ricoeur
hermeneutics machines
According to Günter Figal, understanding means to be able to come back to something. -- we need to refer to and take data out of the archive in order to create new relations between entities. To understand means to return to a previous topic. "re:sponding" /"re:search"
what is needed is a form of contextualizing, such as references to other contributors or background articles that explain more about the date and place of the original entry
commentpress by Bob Stein and his fellows at the Institute for the Future of Books -- comments are turned into collaborative thinking and writing - social reading and social writing are blurring
cultures of complaint -- merely replicate ideology

Disquisition On Internet Criticism

Internet criticism can also take new forms besides well-known genres such as the article, review, essay, and the book
deep into the twentieth century, it was still the critic who defined taste and determined the authenticity of cultural artifacts.
The State of Art Criticism, edited by James Elkins and Michael Newman. -- Art criticism is unsure of its place and function within society
According to Elkins, art criticism is "massively produced, and massively ignored and is in a state of vigorous health and terminal illness".
There is an overproduction of ephemeral criticism, causing numerous interpretations of "meaning" and lack of codification. "Anyoen with access to the internet can become a critic"
Jonathan Jones wrote that in the Guardian February 22, 2010, that it is the job of the critic to reject the relativism and pluralism of modern life... in this age of overload, indifference is the most likely effect of so many competing images.
the relation between art criticism and the rise of the web (Critics Floating in the Virtual Sphere: Will Art Criticism Survive?)
art criticism has transformed into egocentric, celebrity-driven reporting, dominated by amateurs
net criticism could be nothing more than one writing mode amongst many, a basic form of reflection also known as an alternative lifestyle for the rebel who likes to question hierarchies.
Along with Ronan McDonald, Geer Lovink view criticism not as an ideological program but as a much needed basic craft to create literary, and as an invitation to engage in radical thought, away from frivolous commentary and chatter about the latest tweet.
If the future critic has anyadversary to oppose, it would be the anonymous professional information editor, entire frenzied clone armies of them, receiving, repackaging and releasing text and visual material for the global participatory users who then link, like and forward.
What Net criticism should do if it wants to deal with hype is to demonstrate how normative ideas become transformed into their oppopsite, into practices of domination. The goal of Net criticism is to hardwire self-reflexivity into the feedback loop to change the architecture.
concepts are developed and then translated into real-world actions, as well as embedding them into code and protocols
the radical democratization of reviews at sites like Amazon is obviouslly of concern for old-school commentators who feel overloaded with rapid data accumulation.
example like reviews on Amazon Books -- Publishers are instrumentalizing reviewers as blurb machines: please come up with short, juicy statemtns, solely written for propotion purpose.

Part I

Here is the page for gathering research materials focusing on moving image studies. The reading and notes will help me to understand the history and changes of the mechanism of moving image production. Through examining those mechanisms, I want to address my strategies to build new connections among moving images and explore alternatives with human interfering or maybe body involvement.

There are a lot of terms within or related to moving image, such as Cinema, Animation, Video Art, Media Art etc. What's more there are even more genres under them, like music video, video game, avant-garde film to name just a few. I believe there are overlay within those terms and in oder to make the study clear, I take the term moving image, which I emphasised on the mechanism of producing movement or illusion of the dynamic. Under such huge range, I think I should also pick several main subjects to look at. Briefly starting with pro-cinematic devices (Phenakistiscope1832, Thaumatrop, Zootrope1833, Pranxinoscope), then cinema because it has a systematic language, cinematic language, to start with. Then gradually get to digital cinema which is actually be considered as a particular case of animation by Lev Manovich, and last but not least several cases in computer-based moving image.

What is digital cinema

Cinema is not equivalent to storytelling and 'what used to be cinema's defining characteristics have become just the default options, with many other available.'

'As testified by its original names(kinetoscope, cinematograph, moving pictures), cinema was understood, from its birth, as the art of motion.' At its origin, it requited manual action to create movement. (twirling the strings of the Thaumatrope, rotating the Zootrope's cylinder, turning the Viviscope's handle.) 'The movement itself was limited in range and affected only a clearly defined figure rather than the whole image' The movement were based on loops, sequence of images which can be played repeatedly. Although cinematic machines had been built to increase the duration of loop, in order to adopt a much longer narrative form, cutting short seems foredoomed to be developed.

'Once the cinema was stabilised as a technology, it cut all references to its origins in artifice...all of this was delegated to cinema's bastard relative, its supplement, its shadow --animation. Twentieth century animation became a depository for nineteenth century moving image techniques left behind by cinema.' 'In contrast, cinema works hard to erase any traces of its own production process.' 'It pretends to be a simple recording of an already existing reality --both to a viewer and to itself. Cinema'a public image stressed the aura of reality "captured" on film, thus implying that cinema was about photographing what existed before the camera, rather than "never-was" of special effects.'

What is Digital Cinema 1. rather than filming physical reality it is now possible to generate film-like scenes directly in a computer with the help of 3-D computer animation 2. once live action footage is digitised (or directly recorded in a digital format), it loses its privileged indexical relationship to pro-filmic reality. 3. if live action footage was left intact in traditional filmmaking, now it functions as raw material for further compositing, animating and morphing. 4. previously editing and special effects were strictly separate activities Digital cinema is a particular case of animation which uses live action footage as one of its man elements. Born from animation, cinema pushed animation to its boundary, only to become one particular case of animation in the end. In principle given enough time and money, one can create what will be the ultimate digital film: 90mins, i.e., 129600 frames completely painted by hand from scratch, but indistinguishable in appearance from live photography. In commercial cinema, the use of computer is always carefully hidden. with examples from Manovich, it can be perceived the shift from re-arranging reality to re-arranging its images.

To conclude, for me, the circular transformation from animation to cinema back to animation again, the challenge which digital media poses to cinema extends far beyond the issue of narrative, but the very essential making of moving image, the language and syntax. [1]

Computational Cinema

In the 60s technology and software became a field of research to a few artist and scientist in search for new visual and musical dialect. Graphic representations of codes became the main subject. In the 80s main pursuit shift to create the photorealistic image via computer modelling, rendering and to serve asa special tool. nowadays, the theme of visualising codes of complex digital structures, methods and the relation between sound and image that underline the working of the computer's inner information flow became the interest once again by new generation of artist.

Cinema & New Media

Cinema as New Media

Any digital representation consists from a limited number of samples.(digital still imgage is a matrix of pixels: a 2D sampling of space). Cinema was already based on sampling -- the sample of time.(twenty four times a second.)

Cinema as Cultural Interface

cinematic way of seeing the world, of structuring time, of narrating a story, of linking one experience to the next are being extended to become the basic ways in which computer users access and interacct with all cultural data.(visual Espreanto)

Printed word tradition structures interface language; now it is cinema's turn. The most important case cinema's influence on cultural interface Culture Interface -- mobile camera. As computer culture is gradually spatializing all representations and experiences, they become subjected to the camera's particular grammar of data access. Zoom, tilt, pan and track: we now use these operations to interact with data spaces, models, objects and bodies. Another feature of cinematic perception which persists in cultural interfaces is a rectangular perception which persists in cultural interfaces is a rectangular framing of represented reality.(Cinema itself inherited this framing from Western painting. Since the Renaissance, the frame acted as a window onto a larger space which was assumed to extend beyong the frame.) Computer interface benifits from a new invention introduced by cinema: the mobility of the frame. As a kino-eye moves around the space revealing its different regions, so can a computer user scroll through a window's contents. (with a VRML interface, nature is firmly subsumed under culture. The eye is subordinated to the kino-eye.)

Element by element, cinema is being poured into computer both in software and hardware. This encoding is consistent with the overall trajectory driving the computerization of culture since the 1940's, taht being the automation of all cultural operations.(To take the automation of imaging as an example, in the early 1960's the newly emerging field of computer graphics incorporated a linear one-point perspective in 3D software, and later directly in hardware.)

first one-point linear perspective; next the mobile camera and a rectangular window; next cinematography and editing conventions, and, of course, digital personas also based on acting conventions borrowed from cinema, to be followed by make-up, set design, and the narrative structures themselves. From one cultural language among others, cinema is becoming the cultural interface, a toolbox for all cultural communication, overtaking the printed word. [2]

New Language of Cinema

Loop as a Narrative Engine
Spacial Montage (an alternative to traditional cinematic temporal montage)
Cinema as an information space
Cinema as code

New Avant-Garde[3]

  • Media Access
  • Media Analysis
  • Media Generation and Manipulation

reference works

  • Ernie Gehr - Serene Velocity (1970)
  • Zbigniew Rybczynski - tango (1981)

  1. text or idea from What is digital cinema? -- Essay from Lev Manovich
  2. The Language of New Media(2001), book from Lev Manovich
  3. Avant-garde as Software 1999: