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Vanessa’s Spunktacular Arthistory 108D Study Guide

ARTHISTORY 108D
PROFESSOR KRISTINE STILES
DUKE UNIVERSITY – FALL 2006
VANESSA VILLAMIA SOCHAT

CONTENTS

Vocabulary .................................................................................................................................................................... 2

Key Concepts ................................................................................................................................................................. 4

Caroline Bruzekius - "Seeing Sells Salvation" ......................................................................................................... 4

Tom Rankin - “The Slipperty Truth of the Documentary Images” ........................................................................ 4

Esther Gabara ........................................................................................................................................................... 4

Bill Noland – “War and Photography” ..................................................................................................................... 5

Kimberly Rorschach - “Visualizing Museum Practices” .......................................................................................... 5

Patricia Leighten on “Visualizing Dissent: Modernism and Media” ....................................................................... 5

Lee D. Baker – “Fabricating the Authentic Anthropology and the 1890's” ............................................................ 5

Multiplicity in Visual Culture.................................................................................................................................... 5

Reproduction, Visual Technologies, and Mass Media in the Public Sphere ........................................................... 5

Representing and Consuming Blackness in the International Market ................................................................... 6

Designing Visual Communication in Japan .............................................................................................................. 6

Narrative Cinema and its Visual Pleasures .............................................................................................................. 6

Keepin’ it Real - Reality Television and Visual Culture ............................................................................................ 6

Elements of an Effective Scientific Visualization ..................................................................................................... 6

Scientific Uses of Images .......................................................................................................................................... 6

Cathy Davidson- “The Futures of Thinking: Digital Media and Learning” .............................................................. 7

Priscilla Wald on “Visualizing Contagion: Emerging Infections in the Media” ...................................................... 7

SUMMARY POINTS ON VISUAL CULTURE...................................................................................................................... 8


VOCABULARY

• Three Forms of Representation


1) Presentation to or in the mind in the form of an idea or image
2) A creation that is a visual or tangible rendering of someone or something
3) The act of representing or standing in for someone or some group and speaking on their behalf

• Semiotics
The science of signs, has two parts
 Signifier: made up of the image/sound/word
 Signified: meaning

• Three forms of visual images (Charles Sanders Pierce)


 Icon = image
 Index = image dependent on existence of object
 Symbol = meaning is a mental sign
• Three types of signs
 Iconic = very obvious or are the thing they represent
 Indexical = things we have to learn through everyday life that have meaning once we
learn them
 Symbolic = hardest to understand, no logical connection between them and what they
represent. Mean different things for different people

Ekphrasis: The verbal representation of a visual representation

Mimesis: Greek word for imitation

Hegemonic: power over others

Framing: Reduce visual elements to focus on a certain component

Intertextuality: all that establishes the image in a relationship (whether obvious or concealed) with other images in
a relationship of co-presence between two texts or among several images

Hypertextuality: indicates a level of dependence between images and texts across multiple locations

Paratextuality: indicates presence of material around the primary image, but in which the text is embedded. The
framing acts of title, subtitle, preface, etc.

Metatextuality: Moves outward to consider the effects of commentary and critical relationships proposed between
one text and another

• Huxley’s Ways of Seeing


Sense  Select  Perceive  Remember  Learn  Know…

Evil Eye: People have the capacity to harm with a look

• Looking versus Seeing


 Looking means to examine
 Seeing is the mere act of viewing
 The Gaze: A level of looking that is erotically charged
• Scopophilia: A love of looking, deriving pleasure from observing others
inconspicuously
• Scopic drive: The need to see
• Scopophobia: fear of being looked at

Anamorphosis: Trickery of the eye

Salvation: Life without sin through goodness

Coloniality: A form of globalization that began with the conquest of the Americas, slavery and colonialism started
system of global capitalization… race was invented

Human Actuality: Capture foreign aspect of another person to show personal portrayal, takes beyond familiar to
understand the exotic as familiar

Ideology: systems of belief in all cultures

Image Illiteracy: interconnection between image and text, the ability to read/understand an image or text

Mapping of Images: the resignification of appropriated images, reconfiguring semiotics, reclaiming terms as one’s
own

• Spectacle
1) A social relationship amongst people mediated by images
2) Something or someone seen
3) A striking or unusual sight
4) An elaborate display on a lavish scale
5) A blunder that makes one appear ridiculous
6) A construction that imagines an ideal spectator as subject
7) Guy Debord:
 In a society where modern conditions of production prevail, all of life presents itself as
an immense accumulation of spectacles. Everything that was directly lived has moved
away into a representation

Encoding: the intentions of the producer


Decoding: what we do

• Realism
1) An attempt to represent people, objects, or places in a realistic manner
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2) 19 century art movement in France
3) Style in art in which the subject is portrayed as closely as possible to what human eye sees
4) In theater: a value that imagines and tries to portray direct imitation

• Cinema
 Spectacle: visual device in tension with the narrative that threatens to stop the flow
 Narrative: cause and effect relations in time

Immediacy: erasure of the gap between signifier and signified, between representation and reality, forgetting the
presence of the medium

Hypermediacy: Remind the viewer of the medium – making us conscious that the reality we see is mediated.
Surveillance: a way in which we observe the social world, supposedly unaware of the cameras, which yields
“truth” and “reality”

Hyperreality: the authentic fake. A blending of reality and representation where there is no clear indication where
the former stops and the latter begins.

Modernism: knowledge is a stable thing, (the original version), the scientific method is legitimate, we are unified
human beings
Postmodernism: knowledge is constantly in flux, hyperreality and hypermediacy, questions the scientific method,
questions values, puts all assumptions under scrutiny

Metanarrative: a narrative that attempts to account for huge bodies of experience and knowledge (Marxism)

Simulacra: signs that are copies of other signs with no origin, the circulation of signs

Millennial: everyone born after 1983

Contagion: the imperceptible circulation (of microbes and ideas)

Disease Emergence: commingles disease threat and new social formations

KEY CONCEPTS

CAROLINE BRUZEKIUS - "SEEING SELLS SALVATION"

2) social context conditions seeing


3) images can be an aid in managing and controlling social and spiritual values
4) images can establish hierarchies of power and authority
5) images can serve as forms of protection
6) images need to change to adapt to changing circumstances

TOM RANKIN - “THE SLIPPERTY TRUTH OF THE DOCUMENTARY IMAGES”

7) The documentary image as a vehicle for "bearing witness," and as a kind of "proof" that "I was
there."
8) Photographer Lewis Hine's idea that "photographs don't lie but liars often photograph," and
consideration of the documentary image as a vehicle of reform.
9) Novelist James Agee's notion of "human actuality"
10) Documentary imagination or "lyric documentary."
11) The documentary image (in film or photo) as an articulation of a personal truth or point of view.

ESTHER GABARA

12) Colonality and Contact Zones


13) Image and Literacy
14) Race: Casta Paintings and Photographic Types
15) Mapping Images
BILL NOLAND – “WAR AND PHOTOGRAPHY”

16) Has photography changed the context of wars?


17) Has photography made war less likely?
18) Are photographs of suffering subject to an empathy threshold
19) Is gender a factor in war, ie: can war be considered masculine?
20) Are photographs today so easily manipulated that they have lost "authority" and has that been
replaced by a reflexive belief in the veracity of video?

KIMBERLY RORSCHACH - “VISUALIZING MUSEUM PRACTICES”

21) The museum context conditions our way of seeing and the assumptions we make about what
wee are seeing
22) Museum narratives are constructed and contingent, not objective or inevitable
23) Displaying art effectively in the museum is a complicated and specialized task.

PATRICIA LEIGHTEN ON “VISUALIZING DISSENT: MODERNISM AND MEDIA”

24) Modernity describes the conditions of the modern world; modernism responds to the experience
of those conditions, including the impact of photography, electricity, and numerous other forms
of technology; science, war, and changing gender relations, among others.
25) The modernist invention of 'collage' from coller to glue combines materials frequently common
and mass produced objects into a new kind of art work, constituting a breakdown of older,
traditional media like oil paint on canvas and confronting the viewer with a new esthetic bassed
on what the poet Guillaume Apollinaire named 'fragmentation' and 'surprise'.
26) The subversiveness of modernism can only operate in relation to tradition; the outrageousness
of modern art subverts tradition, for instance renaissance versus cubist perspective, and
frequently encodes dissent from past values.

LEE D. BAKER – “FABRICATING THE AUTHENTIC ANTHROPOLOGY AND THE 1890'S”

27) Technology, used by scientists and entertainersm has made images of the "savage" more
authentic
28) Images have been used in a tug of war between ideas Lamarackism and social Darwinism
29) Entertainment and mass media play an important role in making anthropology legitimate as a
science.

MULTIPLICITY IN VISUAL CULTURE

30) Questions of authorship, as raised by the engravings of Raimondi


31) Cultural dominiion, as exemplified in the lithographs of the Currier and Ives Company
32) Interrogating replication, through the silkscreens of Andy Warhol
33) Visual Democracy, as expressed in the digital art of Takasha Murakami

REPRODUCTION, VISUAL TECHNOLOGIES, AND MASS MEDIA IN THE PUBLIC SPHERE


34) Realism as a form of representation linked to imagining technologies like perspective and to
various modes of cultural practices
35) Concepts of media and mass as modernist modes of identifying the role and reception of images
in culture.

REPRESENTING AND CONSUMING BLACKNESS IN THE INTERNATIONAL MARKET

36) how representations of blackness can communicate stereotypical constructions of blackness


37) how stereotypical constructions of blackness travel internationally and are adapted,
reinterpreted, and redesigned in a variety of cultures
38) how such constructions persist today

DESIGNING VISUAL COMMUNICATION IN JAPAN

39) creating a visual language of “Japaneseness”


40) Nouvelle wafu (Japanese-style) design
41) Cute culture

NARRATIVE CINEMA AND ITS VISUAL PLEASURES

1) Narrative as cause and effect relations in time


2) Spectacle as visual device in tension with narrative, threatening to stop the flow. (Most
Hollywood films are spectacle)
3) Attractions as defining a pre narrative moment in early cinema, and later in contemporary
cinema coming to define the most visceral aspects of the moving picture.

KEEPIN’ IT REAL - REALITY TELEVISION AND VISUAL CULTURE

42) Critical analysis of “reality TV” requires an understanding of the specificity of the televisual
43) “Reality TV” is a spectacular mode of address, engaging viewers in fascinating questions about
the nature of reality and the performance of the self.
44) Reality TV promotes surveillance and confession as two privileged modes of accessing the “truth”
of reality and the self. What are the political implications of this observation in an era of
increased governmental surveillance on the one hand, and the explosion of “individual
expression” via video blogs on YouTube and MySpace on the other?

ELEMENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION

45) Consider primary versus supporting information:


46) Effectively Show Scale
47) Consider showing time along a spatial axis
48) use appropriate color maps for the task at hand

SCIENTIFIC USES OF IMAGES

49) the visual as macrocosmic


50) the visual as microcosmic
51) the visual as nanocosmic
52) the visual and the theological, raising the question of vision and discourses on human practices
and their relations to the sacred and the profane.

CATHY DAVIDSON- “THE FUTURES OF THINKING: DIGITAL MEDIA AND LEARNING”

53) Hypothesis: Many of those who have grown up since 1983 (introduction of the desktop
computer) and 1991 (when the internet went public) learn, interact socially, read, and gather
information in ways that are different than in previous generations. What characterizes those
differences? Do those differences constitute a new way of thinking?
54) Facts: The US educational system is failing all of us. Nationally, independent surveys indicate that
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thirty percent of high school students do not graduate within four years, making the US now 17
among developed nations. “Leave no Child Behind” reinforces the idea that one size fits all
education that seems to be fitting neither the best nor the poorest students and that, in fact, is
leaving many children behind.
55) Vision: If we were to imagine the future of thinking – including both formal education and
informal learning as part of the process – what would it look like? How would we incorporate
peer to peer learning, creativity, visual literacy, imagination, choice, collaborative thinking,
project based thinking, and explorations into the ideal educational system of the future? What
would the university look like in ten, twenty, fifty, or one hundred years if it were to be truly
responsive to new ways that students learn and think? How can we envision the future of
thinking together?

PRISCILLA WALD ON “VISUALIZING CONTAGION: EMERGING INFECTIONS IN THE MEDIA”

I.
 Contagion has a long history, which applies and commingles ideas about germs with
germs themselves; these are dangerious contacts and powerful connections that inform
what might be called the social “glue” which is both strange and familiar
 “Contagion” refers to the imperceptible circulation (of microbes and ideas) visualizing it
is a powerful expression of expertise; images tell an important story about contagion.
 “Disease emergence” commingles disease threat and new social formations.
II.
 The opening scene from outbreak (directed by Wolfgang Peterson, 1995) offers a
geography of contagion and disease emergence.
 Newsweek photos from a SARS essay provide a view of the temporarily of contagion and
“disease emergence”
 The opening scene of Invasion of the Body Snatchers (directed by Philip Kaufman) 1978
as well as a photograph of a T-cell from Scientific American, special issue on HIV/AIDS,
1988 suggest the ecology, apocalypse, and abstruction of the subject.
• Why is it so easy to take for granted images we see on a daily basis?
o They are very familiar
o Naturalization makes products appear that they were already that way
o The naturalization of ANYTHING – why post modernism is so threatening. It deconstructs the
naturalization of everything. (religious beliefs, values, etc)
 Naturalization is products, values, and mental images
 What is a naturalized image of a woman? Naturalized ideas are the consistent repetition
of some image in culture that we take as natural
o If we DON’T take images for granted, we get too tired.

• Are certain areas more visual than others? NO! ALL areas are visual

• What difference is there between art history and visual studies?


o Visual studies can talk about things not conventionally visual
o While art history has always located the visual arts, in a material history, it has concentrated
more on the object than on the general context.
o Visual studies is an expansion of the field of the critique of images, and the expansion is infinite

• What can I do to change a visual stereotype?


o Spread my own point of view, infect people!
o Power seems impenetrable so we don’t think we can change it, but we can!

SUMMARY POINTS ON VISUAL CULTURE

1) Visual culture is a tool for economic means that extends far beyond the visual. Painting bought for 68
million dollars… money going to be spent on building new education building. It’s impact builds new
school, educational facilities, it has another function in the world. It is prized for its uniqueness, vision of
the time, skill, etc.
2) The visual both edifies and threatens naturalized concepts and demonstrates that values are not
universal. Took students to Dallas Art museum and was suspended when student saw nude work of art.
Saw idealized form of woman who represents nature, and saw I am beautiful sculpture. Is seeing nudity
threatening to children? Is there a space where nudity is safe (like an art museum)? Ashcroft had nude
breast covered for speech. The visual raises these questions and issues.
3) Much of visual culture from art, advertising, and the internet is used to exhibit erotic images, as well as
trade in bodies that are mostly women and girls or people of color.
4) The visual is political: stamp made to commemorate Norman R Morrison. Burned self with gasoline in
front of Pentagon… threw daughter to save her. Morrison was doing demonstration against war in
Vietnam. Very radical act, is a visual image. This image is resisting.
5) The visual may be used to divide or unite and similar strategies reoccur over time: Great Wall of China,
world’s biggest construction endeavors. Built to KEEP PEOPLE OUT. Villa de los caballeros is one of best
preserved medieval walls in Europe.
a. Did these walls ever work?
b. Berlin Wall: absolute control on Eastern side.
c. East Campus wall creates strong divide between Durham and Duke
d. We don’t even HAVE to have a wall, lots of visuals can be separating
6) The visual as a sign of resistance to power:
a. The Berlin wall as seen from the West. We could go up to Berlin Wall and put graffiti on it.
Graffiti is a visual sign that resists power. I am anonymous and your power cannot do anything
to me. Our graffiti bridge is a gallery.
b. Wall surrounding Israel: there is an abuse of the Palestinians akin to apartheid
7) The poverty of the visual or what is ignored: The US Mexico barrier is actually several separation barriers
designed to prevent illegal movement across the US Mexico border. Consider why is this border not being
built between the USA and Canada in terms of race relations and labor.
8) The visual as a tool for science, exhibiting the macro and the micro aspects of the universe
9) THE VISUAL IS MENTAL. The mind in conjunction with social practices constructs attitudes, values,
approaches to life, as well as empathy and antagonism. to change the limitations of sight, one must
change ones attitudes and sometimes even ones values.