Photogenesis - Brokering World

Burleigh, Peter. (2019) Photogenesis - Brokering World. In: Aberrant Nuptials: Deleuze and Artistic Research 2. Leuven, pp. 437-444.

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From its inception, what became named photography was characterized as the production of images "impressed by Nature's hand." A technology without want of human agency, albeit that the earliest full proclamation of photography published by Henry Talbot in a scurry to claim the priority of his "art of photogenic drawing" following Daguerre's earlier announcement in January 1839 is replete with the reconstruction of human agency: a reflection back in time, documenting Talbot's discovery of the photogenetic after the event. Precisely such after-the-eventness centred in its historiography gives the lie to photography as a natural medium.  Along a durational trajectory the photographic is the amassed residues of the recording of world after the event. It is the optical visibility of seemingly automatized technique-mostly banal, unary, mundane. Yet the photographic also renders visible the photogenic event. It makes visible-actualizes-flows of difference, bringing the world into image form. How can the trite give way to the erudite without being arrogant? How can the islands of meaning-each time machine that the photograph is-be laid out into an archipelago, a shifting moving mass of sensation that is still cast as theoretically challenging.  My response is that an understanding of the photographic has to radically shift from thinking it as an inductive technique representing the world to instead a first virtual medium intervening in making the world. Interrogating both Vilém Flusser's and Gilles Deleuze's sceptical takes on photography through the tool of Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot, I claim we must consider photography not as graphic medium but as genetic process. Moreover, the mechanisms of the photogenetic provide us with more than just image. Seeing those processes as players in regime of capital, raises the stakes of the understanding of photography to an aesthetic critique through which we can make a difference.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaften > Fachbereich Englische Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft
UniBasel Contributors:Burleigh, Peter Robert
Item Type:Book Section, refereed
Book Section Subtype:Further Contribution in a Book
Publisher:Leuven University Press
Series Name:Orpheus Institute Series
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Book item
Last Modified:05 Aug 2020 15:34
Deposited On:05 Aug 2020 15:34

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