Please note there is a week delivery period for this title. Instead of attempting to understand how a subject perceives the world, Wiesing starts by taking perception to be real. He then asks what this reality means for a subject. In his original approach, the question of how human perception is possible is displaced by questions about what perception obliges us to be and do. He argues that perception requires us to be embodied, to be visible, and to continually participate in the public and physical world we perceive.
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Schott tr. His work is an exercise in the conceptual analysis of the image. Wiesing considers what things belong to the category of images.
What this exercise reveals is the existence, explicitly and often implicitly, of competing understandings of what an image is. By providing an introduction to different approaches in image studies Wiesing also shows how various notions of the nature of an image are embedded in different philosophical methodologies.
Through considering the implications of different understandings of images, Wiesing brings to light the need, when dealing with images as part of philosophical discussions, for example in the philosophy of art, to be more explicit about the understanding of images being employed. There is, therefore, ample reason for us to take seriously the question: what is an image? As the title, Artificial Presence, indicates, Wiesing takes the specific characteristic of images to be that they make visible an object which is "only artificially, present" ix.
This, he suggests, implies that "the image opens up a view on reality liberated from the constraints of physics" ix. His book is written in a spirit that acknowledges that this leaves us with a further task of clarification and exploration. Wiesing presents and explores his understanding of the concept of the image through a series of separate studies, which serve to set out clearly the core questions in image studies that merit further research.
As such his book provides a useful introduction for both students and researchers whose work engages with images, yet who are new to image studies as a field of enquiry that asks explicitly what images are. If we are interested in the function of images or in the aesthetic experience that certain images afford us, and how this aesthetic experience may or may not be unique to images, it is appropriate that we first engage with the problem of what an image is.
This is also pertinent to those of us who are interested in whether the way in which an image is produced is relevant to its function and aesthetic possibilities. For example, comparative philosophy of painting and photography could benefit from considering the nature of their common classification as images.
The first study Chapter 1 takes up the issue of what image studies is concerned with. Wiesing distinguishes the study of individual images, groups of images, and the image itself, the last of these being the philosophical concern of image theory. The move to this final topic is, he insists, a step from an empirical to a conceptual enquiry.
As such it requires a distinct methodology in order to investigate the categorization of images as opposed to a set of objects whose classification is taken as given.
This brief chapter serves by way of introduction to the more substantive sections that follow. The next chapter provides an extremely helpful overview of existing approaches to image theory. Wiesing describes an anthropological approach, which begins from the assumption that images are artifacts; a semiotic approach, which treats images as signs; and a phenomenological approach, which takes as its base point the recognition that images are visible objects and seeks to establish what the distinct form of visibility is that images possess.
Wiesing associates these approaches with particular thinkers and considers their contributions and limitations. The differences in these approaches highlight for Wiesing that what remains in question is what an image is: "What is important is the mutual reproach that the other approach commits a fundamental category mistake" In Chapter 2 Wiesing rejects the thesis that images are necessarily signs, a thesis that he develops more fully in Chapter 3, where he offers a stronger positive argument than he does in some of the more speculative sections.
Here he makes a compelling case for the need to ask when images are signs. Wiesing stresses that the claim that "Images can but they do not have to function as signs" must not be conflated with the stronger claim that there are some images that are not signs Whether an image is a sign cannot be established by reference to the image alone.
Rather the position that Wiesing advocates is a functionalist understanding of images as signs, where some images happen not to operate as signs. Wiesing shows the semiotic view of images is problematic by asking "What does the world image mean in the sentence The image refers [bezieht sich] to something?
Wiesing suggests that we need the Husserlian distinction between image carrier and image object to make sense of various different statements that employ the ambiguous term image. He argues that it is the image object that operates as the signifier; "the image carrier is not the sign carrier but displays the sign carrier", in the same way that any other object can be used as a sign This function depends on the context in which the image object appears: "every assignment of sense is contingent; not only can it be different; it does not have to be all" A topic, which, through the notion of transparency, connects with this metaphor, is the short discussion of media, rather than merely images, given in Chapter 8.
Here Wiesing again employs Husserlian concepts and argues that "Media are necessary for a separation between genesis and validity" Media make possible a conceptual distinction between the physical process and its non-physical production, which allows that "the very same thing can be seen, heard, and thought at different times, in different places, by different people" Wiesing approaches this question in terms of the reasons for abstraction in photography.
He suggests that "abstract photography wants to answer the question of what a photo is" and thus "the abstract photo is a kind of experiment for the question What makes a photograph possible?
Abstract photography can bring the structure of visibility in a photograph to light because it "can forgo displaying a thing in order thus to show how a photo displays an object" It may, alternatively, operate to show how a photograph can be an image and not a sign. In response to this task it creates an image object that refuses the obvious use as a sign for a thing that bears visible resemblance to it because this image object does not, at least not in this way, bear resemblance to any known real thing Finally, and more controversially, Wiesing claims that abstract photographs might show that photographs are not always images.
The question is, can one abstract from even this aspect of photographs and still be doing photography? Wiesing suggests photographic objects, which are not purely visible but can be touched and smelt, achieve this.
The discussion of this example remains frustratingly brief. Wiesing does not explain if, and how, this object is produced according to his own broad definition of photography, in which materials react to electromagnetic rays. It is not obvious that the use of photographic paper is in itself enough to make this art work an example of photography. This is a timely discussion, which distinguishes virtual reality from immersion and shows the need for research into the new kinds of image objects that new media present, notably the interactive image object of simulation.
It raises more questions than it answers, but they are pertinent and clearly delineated. Wiesing acknowledges, however, that Plato at times refers explicitly to images, and develops a reading in which Plato is understood as engaged with a canon in which images involve replication. It is the deviation from this understanding of replication in favor of mimicking appearance which Plato then criticizes and contrasts to truth. I feel this interesting point would have benefited from further discussion and its relevance could have been demonstrated throughout this short and intriguing study.
He provides a clear analysis of the questions that need asking and offers some interesting responses to these questions.
The Philosophy of Perception
Reviewed by Nico Orlandi, University of California, Santa Cruz Looking at the history of analytic philosophy of perception we can easily find two recurring issues. One is the investigation of the objects of perception -- for example, whether they are ordinary objects or sense data. The other is the investigation of what the subject needs to do in order to perceive. In this book, Lambert Wiesing proposes that we switch paradigms. Rather than focusing on the object or on the subject of perception or on both , we should focus on perception itself and on its significance for perceivers.
Kagazahn Lambert Wiesing — Wikiquote Embodiment and identity are among the topics transformed by examining the necessary a priori consequences of the reality of perception. In his original approach, the question of how human perception is possible is displaced by questions about what perception obliges us to be and do. The book contains invigorating argument and surprising developments on every page. Wiesin argues that perception requires us to be embodied, to be visible, and to continually participate in the public and physical world wiwsing perceive. English Choose a language for shopping. Philosophy without a Model 3. Philosophical Myths and Models 2.
Schott tr. His work is an exercise in the conceptual analysis of the image. Wiesing considers what things belong to the category of images. What this exercise reveals is the existence, explicitly and often implicitly, of competing understandings of what an image is. By providing an introduction to different approaches in image studies Wiesing also shows how various notions of the nature of an image are embedded in different philosophical methodologies. Through considering the implications of different understandings of images, Wiesing brings to light the need, when dealing with images as part of philosophical discussions, for example in the philosophy of art, to be more explicit about the understanding of images being employed. There is, therefore, ample reason for us to take seriously the question: what is an image?
His areas of specialisation are phenomenology, cognitive and image theory, and aesthetics. From to Wiesing was president of the German Society for Aesthetics. Instead of attempting to understand how a subject perceives the world, Wiesing starts by taking perception to be real. He then asks what this reality means for a subject. In his original approach, the question of how human perception is possible is displaced by questions about what perception obliges us to be and do.