Nov 20, 2015
Lecture at the DHC/ART
Foundation for Contemporary Art
With a significantly slower life than images constructed by photojournalism, images in the artworld can consider problematic imagery from an oblique angle that strategically allows for a different temporality of seeing. The typical typological differences between the documentary image and the art image are based on boundaries normally drawn between effect/affect or fact/fiction, but this is a misconception that art is more emotional or manipulative than press images or that ideological narratives are the exclusive strategy of propaganda. Both forms of the image can evoke despair or dazzle with spectacle, sublimate into icons or reveal the structure of the everyday. Rather their difference fundamentally functions within the realm of speed: the life cycle of the periodical is faster than the arc of the artworld. Infrared photography, in particular, pushes the notion of slowness into the materiality of light, for when we look at such false-colour representations, technically speaking, the only difference is their subtle shift in wavelengths: slower oscillations of electromagnetic energy exuding from decaying matter.
"Piercing the Screen" follows a historical intertwining of the infrared and photography projected on seven screens: astronomy, camouflage detection, spirit photography, espionage, voyeurism, environmental sciences and forensics.
The talk is an expanded lecture on the essay by the same title in the DHC publication •••Richard Mosse A Supplement to The Enclave•••