Achim Wollscheid, Frankfurt a. M., 2010
What I see, I see because it makes a difference – that is the classical thesis of cognitive science. Something moves, the rest is quiet. I suddenly recognize a structure in something without order: a cube among circles…
The foundation of this idea is the world as tableau. A world that is structured, arranged in juxtaposition, classified into foreground and background. I can distinguish variations and differences as I overlook this tableau or at least a crucial part of it. When seeing a relevant difference between movement in the foreground and the statics of the background and comparing these with known patterns I retrievethis information: the rabbit is running.
The position of the spectator’s privileged vantage point which once allowed us to sit or stand quietly in front a tableau can only be taken in hypothetically as the tableau itself changed. It has become partitioned, less comprehensible and is more cluttered than it used to be. Differences appear and vanish as images come and go. These images are images of images, sequences of references, resemblances and short-term links.
An image of what? Most likely an image of an image – an image that resembles another image? Probably. Postmodernism’s key aspect that signifiers have their own qualities and won’t interfere with the signified had a soothing effect which we will have to learn to live without as we can see now that images do more than merely float about and exist individually.
As a consequence and accompanying phenomenon of real-time creation of images we have to question what we observe. Is what I see just feedback of my own user profile? (A childhood dream comes true: a world built for me – a scenery and setting built up wherever I go and disassembled when I leave.)
Which images do I share with others? What does it mean to share? Can I choose my viewpoint or is the position I am in a function or feature of the images I view? If so, which position am I assigned by the images, when I see? I believe images are programs and viewing means to ask oneself which kind of viewing and viewpoint the program permits or assigns.