Photography - Theory - Visual Culture
Resistance and protest are at the core of being an indigenous person, especially nowadays in Brazil.


Articles - Essays - Interviews
With the evolution of the political regimes, the image of a successful leader has shifted from an image of majesty to one of dignity, and later on to one of closeness and simplicity.

When one visits the rooms dedicated to Velásquez in the Museum of Prado, it is extraordinary how portraits of kings and those of jesters and peasants are laid side-by-side. The nobility and dignity given to the lower members of the court exemplifies an early example of a revolution in the politics of representation. In the antipodes of this example, we analyse how the campaign of the millionaire Michael Bloomberg to be the Democratic Candidate for the 2020 elections hired companies to produce nonsense memes and digital propaganda. Our hypothesis is that on the center of its strategy the goal was to create an image of Bloomberg that besides viral would be relatable and humorous. The article overviews the evolution of the portrait as an element of political of representation and reflects on how the development of modern and contemporary art transformed the art of political portraiture. Furthermore it deliberates on the two-way appropriation of representation techniques between art movements and political movements.

The visuality of the master is not motivated merely by the desire to stand out from the audience, but in a self-contradictory manner, it is premised on the audience acknowledging and providing photographic space to him.

India’s Independence from the colonial rule saw the nation’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru emerge as a powerful visual presence. At the peak of his popularity, in June 1955, he made a highly publicised 16-day visit to the USSR. This visit, made in the backdrop of the Cold War and the impending Big Four Conference, was covered in detail by the Indian and foreign press, as well as both government’s official photographers and camerapersons. Paper addresses an official album made after this iconic visit to investigate the role of photography within India-Soviet diplomatic networks. Casting Nehru as the Master persona, it delves into the function of photography in recasting his image as an international traveller, a crusader for peace, a negotiator, and a friend of the Soviet. Considering India’s and Soviet’s differing political stance and international position in that period, the article questions what does the presence of these official photographs reveal about emerging trans-national networks and if there were there any deviations in this careful reconstruction of the Master and his ally.

The power struggle that findom photography presents is actually just a hook, and the images do exactly what they set out to do. The free critic, by critiquing masculinity’s repetition and contrivance, is recruited into the performative duty of sustaining the eroto-economy.

Financial domination (findom) is a fetish practice in which a submissive derives erotic pleasure from sending money to a dominant or a cashmaster. Cashmasters produce photographs meant to elicit this desire in cashslaves, essentially arousing the desire to send money. This essay approaches this emergent genre of seemingly self-promotional photography as a genre of photographic performativity (Levin 2009). Rather than the desire to capture or represent (Batchen 1999), these images evidence a choreography of photographic performativity including both masters (as makers) and slaves (as viewers). Though the compliance with form and economic practice tempts the interpretation that masters are now slaves, this essay suggests that these images invite performances of domination, submission, and critique into wider performatives of arousal and elicitation. What critics and social analysts perceive as power (economic, erotic, or otherwise) are, in fact, desire at its seams, in the process of active and cooperative composition.

The figures are essentially ambiguous, at the crossroads of nature and culture.
What makes photographs so complex is how they render visible that which should not be possible to see. Therefore, in some way, all photographs teach us how to see and set out the co-ordinates for our visual understanding.

Open Access

Hegel’s declaration of the end of art does not claim that art is effectively over, rather that this is true of a certain kind of understanding art. This is a part of a given historical moment: Hegel said it exactly in the moment when art actually gained true autonomy for the first time.

In the chapter “Self-consciousness”, found in his most important work The Phenomenology of Spirit (1807), Hegel presents his famous thesis on the master-slave dialectic. The relationship between the two is reciprocal as one’s self-consciousness is acknowledged only through the other’s self-consciousness. In a combat relation, one of these self-consciousness’s gives way, while the other rises from the fight as a master. The idea of a master-slave dialectic was one of Hegel’s most influential ones; most notably, it inspired Marx in his formulation of the historical struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Much later, Kojève pointed out that Marx, in his formulation, omitted a key element found in Hegel’s equation: knowledge/truth is always on the side of the slave/proletariat. This gap that influenced the great French thinkers could not have come at a better time. Following the French Revolution, the structure of sovereignty changed radically, as the new social structures required a different kind of sovereignty. Up until the times of Freud, who witnessed the last “true” monarch, Franz Joseph, the remaining powerful father figures were slowly losing their power. The disappearance of traditional authorities provoked changes in the social structure. Society became mediatized hand in hand with political populism, however, this mediatization received its antipode in modern art.

For Jure Kastelic, a radical turn in the relationship with the medium was brought about by the realization of the true potentials of photography, extending beyond its intrinsic value as documenter of reality.
For Jure Kastelic, a radical turn in the relationship with the medium was brought about by the realization of the true potentials of photography, extending beyond its intrinsic value as documenter of reality.
Unlike in the material world in the social networks techno-capital rules, which places the master and an average human on an equal level.

The communication power of the social network Instagram is important to address due to its relaxed nature of presenting details from the ordinary lives of individuals. A comparison of the manners in which influencers and politicians represent themselves brings to front a changed dynamic of social power, as it is available online to anyone who can persuade followers to identify with them or to wish to do so in the future. Two ways of identification with an influencer are assumed, namely increasing and decreasing of distance between them and their followers. The text focuses on the latter, where politicians approach the people by showing the banality of their everyday lives. After reviewing the profiles of two Slovenian politicians, a noticeable pattern is that they most often do so with photographs of puppies and kittens.

Animals are becoming an increasingly bigger part of our lives, our inevitable loneliness. They complement our human or spiritual side that we are deprived of. – Can Batukan

“Why look at animals?” asks art critic John Berger. I would like to address this question by paraprashing it and asking instead, “why look at dead animals?” Extinct or rare animals are the most interesting objects of the camera of curiosities and natural history museums. Hiroshi Sugimoto focuses on the dioramas where animals are shown in their habitats. Lynn Savarese revitalizes taxidermied animals as heroes of a story. Humans and animals have equal value in Michael Ackerman’s photographs. Nobuyoshi Araki’s visual diaries contain stories on life and death. Nezaket Tekin creates utopist scenes using insects. Her other work also involves documenting dead animals.

Photographs are more than a sedimentation of image that sits on the world, referring to the world, a kind of shingle that lays on top. Rather, as real enfoldings of the virtual and actual, they are the territories of a multiplicity of sensations that are a genesis, the real actual of a diagrammatic structuring of the world in registers of time and space.

What is a photograph? What a spurious, redundant start! After all, a photograph is clearly an image, a technical image of something. What a photograph is – such a stupid question! Yet, the casual announcement of the photograph as signification relies on an a priori truth that orients our thinking, our identities, our institutions. For it is “in terms of this self-apparent image of thought that everybody knows and is presumed to know what it means to think.” Collaging Deleuze and Bergson, intuition teaches us that an image is a nexus of force in itself, or as Anne Sauvagnargues suggests, what is crucial to images is how they cut into the world. As real enfoldings of the virtual and actual, photographs are the territories of a multiplicity of sensations – a genesis, the real actual of a diagrammatic structuring of the world in registers of time and space. Roger Fenton’s The Queen’s Target made at Queen Victoria’s opening of the first Rifle Association in 1860 is an entry point to thinking deeper signalisation in photographs. While the 3-D work by Andreas Angelidakis indicates photogenetic zones of intensity, temporal dislodgment, and the event of photogenesis actualized in physical form.

Whenever a wall is erected, there will always be “people arisen” to “jump the wall,” that is, to cross over borders. If only by imagining. As though inventing images contributed – a little here, powerfully there – to reinventing our political hopes.

Zigzagging through personal memory and historical episodes of great consequence – the fall of the Berlin wall, the Romanian revolution and the April 2018 protests in Nicaragua – the essay seeks points of connection between the personal and the political, exploring how the two are intimately and inextricably intertwined. The textual approach can be situated in-between historical analysis and auto-biographical fiction; the aim is to enable multi-layered narratives, and contrasting, conflicting temporalities to co-exist. Illustrative of this intent, Romanian artist Călin Man intervenes upon the more well-known documentary photographs referenced in the text, by conflating them with everyday snapshots from the city of Arad taken at different points along the temporal arc described.


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