The Future of the Image week 3: Radical Alterity Presentation Transcript
The future of the image Week 3: Radical AlterityDeborah Jackson
Art and AlterityThe notion of the ‘Self’ hashistorically been presented asa prevalent characteristic ofWestern culture, and definedas the essential quality thatmakes a person distinct fromall others, responsible for thethoughts and actions of anindividualJean-Michel Basquiat in his studio (1985)
What is alterity?Cathy Wilkes. Non Verbal (2006)
Reality itself is unrepresentable, an d as a consequence the world can only be represented through that which it is not. Hal Foster. Return of theKeith Haring Real (1996)Pop Shop (1988)
REPRESENTATION IS NOT NEUTRAL; IT IS AN ACT OF POWER IN OUR CULTURE. Craig Owens (1992)
Intersubjectivity: self and other• A major trait of postmodernity is its emphasis on the relationship between self and other• Postmodernism privileges figures of negativity, figures defined under such terms as alterity, absence, uncertainty and the other
Postmodernism and AlterityAccording to Jean-François Lyotard,postmodernism is characterized:• by incredulity toward master systems of thought in which there’s a place for everything and everything has its place and• by the affirmation of pluralism, the non-totalizing, creative search for whatever does not fit nicely into systematized knowledge. A search, in other words, for Rineke Dijkstra otherness or alterity. Beach Portraits (1992-98)
Adolescence can beviewed as a periodwhen repressed selvesreturn to the consciousmind, this serieselaborates on thealtered alterities thatemerge as a result ofthis identity phase-shift.
The concept of alterity, from an art historicalunderstanding, originated as a Western definition of otherness. Yinka Shonibare. Diary of a Victorian Dandy (1998)
The Cultural Construction of the ‘other’ as different• In anthropological terms alterity refers to the construction of cultural others• Anthropology – the science of alterity• Radical alterity — a culturally constructed Other radically different from Us Tracey Moffat Adventure Series (2003)
Gendered Selves• Discourses of gendered selves parallel discourses of racial identity• This appears in feminist discourses discussing woman as Other, particularly those discourses opposing patriarchy• Women, like colonised subjects, have been relegated to the position of other, colonised by various forms of patriarchal domination" Cindy Sherman Untitled #122 (1983)
Mirror Stage • The gaps between the imaginary, the symbolic, and the real • The unconscious is the discourse of the OtherRobert De Niro as Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver (1976)
The Fetishization of Alterity • Globalized cultural diversity and the consumption of alterity • The binary oppositions by which Western thought had defined what is called real have become thoroughly polluted, contaminated, an d untenable
Postmodernity seeks tolive alterity as its destinyand not to be the source ofalterity in so far aspostmodernity choosesnot to produce thedifferentiated ordisseminated other. Douglas Gordon Divided Self
The need to acknowledge and preserve the radical difference or alterity, which is constitutive of every individualDouglas GordonSelf-portrait as Kurt Cobain, as AndyWarhol, as Myra Hindley, as MarilynMonroe (1996)
Ontology and Alterity The theme of alterity is prominent in many works of art, in many modalities; in films, novels, and the visual arts, artists have addressed this complex domain. Fight Club (1999)
Avatar (2009)Related to this tradition of art is the narrative ofescape from the constricting self that involvesencounters with that which is radically other, but aradical other that activates a fresh self.
Kafka’s Metamorphosis (1915) can be seen as dealing with a radical othernessof the self and how, when this radical other-that-is-self is encountered byother-as-self, it is treated by them as an alien disgusting sub human – acockroach.
Double selves, doppelgan gers and multiplicities are often used as means of exploring alteritiesJeff Koons, Triple Hulk Elvis I (2007)
A doppelgänger is a tangible double of a living person infiction, folklore, and popular culture that typically represents evil. In thevernacular, the word doppelgänger has come to refer to any double orlook-alike of a person. The word also is used to describe the sensation ofhaving glimpsed oneself in peripheral vision, in a position where there isno chance that it could have been a reflection.http://mubi.com/lists/doppelganger
Identity and AlterityThe monster, a figure ofradical alterity or difference Marcus Harvey Myra (1995)
Fiction of the otherToday’s society is basedon a generalized‘relationalism’, ratherthan on individualism. Akind of dispersed form ofconnectedness in thepostmodern era. Rirkrit Tiravanija
Otherness and technology Technologies, such as tv, alters the sense of alterity, and in doing so alters all elements of society, including politics, ideas, ethics, ec onomics and social structuresNam June Piak TV Buddha (1974)Closed Circuit video installation with bronze sculpture
In Herbert Marcuse’s One-Dimensional Man (1954) heargues that the one dimensionality of consciousnessapparent in post-industrial society is indicative of aneradication of the sense of alterity.
Is cyberspace liberatory? This suggests the ability to "computer crossdress" and represent oneself as a different gender, age, race, etc.Peter SteinerOn the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog”The New Yorker (1993)
Virtual Reality works by deceiving the senses of the user into thinking that what they are experiencing is something real. “The question is not: is it true? But: does it work? What does it enable? What new thought does it make possible to think? What new emotions does it make it possible to feel?” Brian Massumi (Introduction to Deleuze and Guattarri’s A Thousand Plateus)
Virtuality and cybernetics: Posthuman identityTechnologies have madethoroughly ambiguous thedifference between natural andartificial, mind and body, self-developing and externallydesigned, and many otherdistinctions that used to apply toorganisms and machines. A Dutch TV program had a brilliant idea: have men put on devices that simulate childbirth contractions and film the results.
The Turing Test
The Human in Virtual Worlds• The emoticon is the artificial warrant and guarantee of the human• Emoticons are used when there is a lack of verbal or visual clues, in text only forums• They invoke faces, they are the referent of the
Privileging of therational, h uman subjectMarcusCoates Journey toa Lower World(2004) Performance still
Interior Alterity• where individuals explore their internal self or identity as a means of substituting for the lost experience of the other.Yinka ShonibareRevolution Kid (Fox) (2012)