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Photography

Siegfried Kracauer
p. 245. Este vorba despre medium i despre felul n care acesta face posibil comunicarea.
This study rests upon the assumption that each medium has a specific nature which invites
certain kinds of communications while obstructing others.
Mediumul n care ne cream ideile, le restricioneaz nu numai n ceea ce privete formele
ct i anumite cmpuri.
IN her Philosophy in a New Key Susanne Langer hesitantly admits that "the medium in which we
naturally conceive our ideas may restrict them not only to certain forms but to certain fields."
Cum putem delimita n natur mediul fotografic?
- Rather, analysis must build from the views held of photography in the course of its evolution views which in some way or other must reflect actually existing trends and practices.
- So it will suffice for our purposes to scrutinize only two sets of ideas about photography, those
entertained in the early stages of development and relevant present-day notions.
p. 246. Autenticitate
-There was general agreement that photography reproduces nature with a fidelity "equal to
nature itself.
-Gay-Lussac insisted that no detail, "even if imperceptible," can escape "the eye and the brush of
this new painter." And as early as, 1839 a New York Star reporter admiringly remarked that,
when viewed under a magnifying glass, photographs show minutiae which the naked eye would
never have discovered.
p. 247.
Oglind a memoriei
- The insight into the recording and revealing functions of this "mirror with a memory.
- success odat cu pozitivsmul, ncercarea de a alunga tua romantic ce acoperea lumea.
p. 248.
-REALISMUL mult prea cras a fost mblnzit de Sir William Newton: s aducem fotografa la
rangul deart: nu chiar att de mult realtate. (1853).
-frumuseea n locul adevrului.
p. 249. Democratizare si industrializare.
- All this means that such concern with art led the artist-photographers to neglect, if not
deliberately to defy, the properties of their medium, as perceived by the realists.
- mentalitatea realist a produs idea : photographs were copies of nature.
- The realists, it is true, refrained from identifying photography as an art in its own right.
p. 250. divergente pictura vs fotografie
- The artist-photographers shared these views with a difference: they were confident that
photography need not be limited to reproduction pure and simple. Photography, they reasoned, is

a medium which offers the creative artist as many opportunities as does painting or literature
provided he does not let himself be inhibited by the camera's peculiar affinities but uses every
"dodge, trick, and conjuration" to elicit beauty from the photographic raw material.

Current Views and Trends


p. 250.
-True, Taine's intention to reproduce the objects as they are definitely belongs to the past; the
present-day realists have learned, or relearned, that reality is as we see it.
p. 251
-PUTEREA MEDIUMULUI a crui calitate a crescut considerabil datorit dezvoltrilor
tehnice din ultimul timp.
-atingerea unor laturi nebnuite ale realitii.
- First, modern photography has not only considerably enlarged our vision but, in doing so,
adjusted it to man's situation in a technological age.
- not one single object has retained a fixed, definitely recognizable appearance.
p. 252.
- Second, precisely by exploding perceptual traditions, modern photography has assumed
another function - that of influencing art. Marcel Duchamp relates that in 1912, when he was
painting his Nude Descending the Staircase, Paris art circles were stimulated by stroboscopic and
multiple-exposure high-speed photographs.
- fotografia realist a contrbuit la formarea artei abstracte. Realismul i detaliul fotografic au
determinat artitii s despice forma.
p. 253.
- Fotografia= art: we should learn to consider photography, no less than painting, an "ideal
instrument of visual expression."
-SUPRAREALSMUL si folosirea in tehnica fotografierii a mai multor procedee decat ar fi n
mod normal necesar, tocmai pentru a se pune n parallel cu arta colajului din acele timpuri (n.a).
-Fotografia= mediu artistic.
- the goal of photography as an art medium, he stipulates, is "not the achievement of highest
possible' likeness' of the depicted subject, but the creation of an abstract work of art, featuring
composition instead of documentation."
p. 254. Sec. 19. Dac fotografia este sau nu un mediu artistic?
- No such ambivalence is found among the experimental photographers. They cut the Gordian
knot by insisting that renderings of chance reality, however beautiful, cannot possibly be
considered art. Art begins, they argue, where dependence upon uncontrollable conditions ends.
p. 255.
Proprietile mediului artistic.
p. Principiul artistic al fotografiei are legtur cu

1. Legtura fotografuluilu cu mediumul


2.afinitile fotografiei
3. ceea ce atrage la o fotografie.
1. Legtura fotografului cu mediul :
- trebue sa urmeze o tendin realist n orice situaie.
- fotograful = camera eye
- conform manifestului dn 1856, fotograful ar trebui sa fie foarte obiectiv. Deloc mplicat in
imagine ape care o face
- Proust : fotograful= observator, strinul.
p. 259. But what about the candid photographs mentioned above prints obtained almost
automatically? In their case it falls to the spectator to do the structuring. (The aerial
reconnaissance photos referred to by Newhall interfere with the conventional structuring
processes because of their unidentifiable shapes which cause the spectator to withdraw into the
aesthetic dimension.) Objectivity in the sense of the realist manifesto is unattainable. This
being so, there is no earthly reason why the photographer should suppress his formative faculties
in the interest of the necessarily futile attempt to achieve that objectivity.
p. 260.
The formative tendency, then, does not have to conflict with the realistic tendency. Quite the
contrary, it may help substantiate and fulfill it.
This means that the photographer's selectivity is of a kind which is closer to empathy than to
disengaged spontaneity. He resembles perhaps most of all the imaginative reader intent on
studying and deciphering an elusive text. Like a reader, the photographer is steeped in the
book of nature. His "intensity of vision," claims Paul Strand, should be rooted in a "real respect
for the thing in front of him."
p. 263.
" It is as if the use of photography for strictly artistic purposes led into a sort of no man's
land somewhere between reproduction and expression.
Afinitile fotografiei
- 1. afinitate pentru o realitate ne pus n scen
What counts is his desire to picture nature at its most characteristic so that his portraits look like
casual selfrevelations, "instinct with the illusion of life.
p. 264.
-2. Accentual pica pe intamplare fortuitous evenimente aleatorii.
-In portraiture, by the same token, even the most typical portraits must retain an accidental
character - as if they were plucked en route and still quivered with crude existence.
-. 3. Sugereaz infinitul (fragmente mai degrab i nu un ntreg)
Prelungirea ideii de complet.
Limita fizic a fotografiei (rama) limit provizorie.
p. 265.- 4. O afinitate pentru indeterminare faz momentan a lumi, fr legtur
generalizat cu contextul n care are loc fotografia respectiv.

- His pictures record nature and at the same time reflect his attempt to assimilate and decipher it.
-As compared with a photograph, any painting has a relatively definite significance. Accordingly, it makes
sense to speak of multiple meanings, vague meaningfulness, and the like only in connection with camera work
p. 267.
Fox Talbot called it one of the" charms" of photographs that they include things unknown to their maker,
things which he himself must discover in them.