Tuesday, February 28, 2012
I went on holiday to Tenerife to watch in the new year. Here's some snapshots. Think Ansel Adams meets Cormac McCarthy (minus the talent). I read the apocalyptic novel - The Road - when I was there and my experience of the story intermingled with my experience of being in that landscape - and the sense that it was a difficult landscape to be in. I read the novel so I could later give a lecture on art and the apocalypse. I'm now preparing a lecture on materiality and non materiality in anthropology and I'm wondering where the material in that holiday was. Or how it relates to the presence of these photographs which have so far never left the world of gadgetry, pinged from mobile to laptop. If they can be described as a sort of telepathic residue (as some theorists describe photographs) of my interaction with the Tenerife environment, then it is a worthless residue because I'm not sure I really connected with that inert landscape with which to begin (and now I'm not sure it ever was a landscape). However, sometimes not connecting is connecting. Philosophers such as Polanyi and Heidegger have asked questions about where sensory perception and material distinctness connect or diminsh. Where is the vanishing point between living and non living things - or just how phenomenal is phenomena? Heidegger's concept of 'dasein,' addresses how we are being in the world, in a world which will be itself without us. McCarthy considers this boundlessness in The Road. Ansel Adams does too in a roundabout way.
'How does the never to be differ from what never was?' - Cormac McCarthy, The Road.
'When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.' ― Ansel Adams
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