Tag: visual culture

Cult Exhibition and Internet

Walter Benjamin writes that art is received and valued on two different planes; cult value and exhibition value. Cult value is based in magic and ritual (“what mattered was their existence, not their being on view” 108) versus the spectacle nature of exhibition value, value based on being seen by everyone. With mechanical reproduction in mind, and moving on later…

The Ancient Craft of the Beautiful (group C)

At the heart of Benjamin’s conception of art in modernity is the binary opposition of cult value and exhibition value. His assertion that “artistic production begins with ceremonial objects destined to serve in a cult” (108), notes a particular marriage between the artifact and object-oriented-belief. Cult value functions when an art-object is held as “an instrument of magic” (109), and…

Group C: Proliferation and Increased Tempo of Image Production

Walter Benjamin delves into the history and dilemmas of modern images in “Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.” He discusses pre- and post photographic worlds, what is gained and what is lost through the ability to reproduce pictures. After the advent of photography, a great shift was brought about in the ways we consume images, how we think about…

Group C: Art and Reproduction

  I was really interested in Trevor Paglen’s view on space and intimacy a photograph has with its viewer and how this relates to Walter Benjamin’s view on the loss of authenticity a work has during its reproduction.   When you make a nice print and put in on a wall, you’re creating a space where people can devote a…

Language, Writing, and Introspection

The readings for today – Walter Ong’s “Writing Restructures Consciousness” (Ch. 4) in Orality and Literacy, and Ursula Le Guin‘s speculative short story “The Author of the Acacia Seeds” – are both interested in parsing out what writing is, and how its use either shapes or is shaped by the inner lives of its authors and readers. There’s a lot…