Friday, April 21, 2006

On the Shifting Nature of the Photographic Image

Stone from Jerusalem 12 -2005
It seems that we are in the middle of a significant shift in the ontology of the photographic image. The digital age created a shift on three levels regarding our attitudes towards photographs. The first is that we can no longer believe in the veracity of the representation of the referents. That is, the difference between the documentary and the staged is evaporating. This is highly significant as this was the unique ontological trait of photographs. The second is that if before mostly photographers of visual professionals lived their lives visually, meaning that they photographed what they thought meaningful, now everybody is doing it. The proof can be observed in sites like Flickr, where everything and everywhere at any time is photographed. The third is the liquidity of the photographic image. It could be published immediately and shared with many people instantly. Think about a photographic print, how many people could see it. Or how many negatives have you scanned and published. Now as evidenced by this site you could take a photograph, modify it in Picasa for example and publish it directly to this blog. The photograph now is full of fluidity and liquidity. (c) SLA 2006

1 comment:

luggi said...

yeah, it's a whole different game now. digital photographs are seen one after the other, and they're not bound by means of production.