[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xmca-l] Re: discussing "Posing the question"



Well, the thought I was offering is that there is a living symbolism that
passes around the manifest culture, not through it, a bit like airflow
around the morphology of a wing.  The "ring of truth" resounding as an
historical echo of the forged voyager.

Best,
Huw



On 5 June 2014 22:21, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:

> Huw--
>
> I'm taking symbol as one kind of sign. It's a sign whose interpretation
> passes through a culture.
>
> So if I see a mosquito and infer that summer is here, that's a sign but
> it's not a symbol. But if I go into a department store and I see a picture
> of a mosquito on a box and I infer that the box contains poison of some
> kind, that is a symbol. If I see a T-shirt with an antlered animal on it,
> and I infer that the design represents a moose, that is a sign but it is
> not a symbol. But if I then read and understand the superscript
> "Abercrombie and Fitch" and I infer that the wearer is the sort of person
> who will pay large sums of money in order to have somebody else's
> advertising logo sewn rather than printed on his or her chest, then that is
> a symbol.
>
> Yes, I think that motive is related to the distinction, but I guess I see
> it as a special case of something much more general: the ability of culture
> to move motive away from the immediate situation and to make motive into
> something highly proleptic--something which anticipates and event tries to
> influence the actions of generations unborn. I don't see how this is
> possible without culture and even more specifically without speech. The
> difficulty of writing "danger" logos for future discoverers of our nuclear
> waste--the fact that the messages which we sent to other galaxies via the
> "Voyager" are already dated even to us--the ease with which we can
> distinguish art from pornography are all examples of the indispensability
> of speech to higher artistic functions).
>
> David Kellogg
> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>
>
>
> On 5 June 2014 23:14, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > David,
> >
> > In relation to art I believe the term "symbolic" may be productively
> > related to motive in addition to sign.  It seems to me that the
> > appreciation of motive in art is "non-signed", i.e. not a discrete
> > demarcation used to coordinate action.   So to construe "non-symbolic" as
> > different from the developed form of "higher appreciation of art" may be
> > problematic if you're taking symbolic to mean sign.
> >
> > I can elaborate if this isn't clear.
> >
> > Best,
> > Huw
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > On 4 June 2014 23:04, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > I've been reading a lot about the work of Otto Neurath, who is
> mentioned
> > > briefly by Vygotsky in the context of his discussion of "rudimentary
> > > functions" (e.g. Rock, Paper, Scissors in making decisions). He was
> > > apparently involved in the Munich soviet, briefly imprisoned, then a
> city
> > > official in "Red Vienna", where he seems to have become more interested
> > in
> > > museum curating than anything else. His big dream was to design
> something
> > > called the "Vienna Method" which later became "Isotype", the
> > "International
> > > System of Typographical Education" that forms the basis of most of our
> > > translinguistic street signs and danger instructions today. The idea
> was
> > to
> > > make Vienna's museum's accessible to foreigners, children, and other
> > > illiterates. With the Anschluss, Neurath and his wife took refuge in
> > > Rotterdam, where she died. He then fled to England in an open boat with
> > the
> > > woman who was to become his third wife and co-designer (and they were
> > > immediately separated and interned as enemy aliens upon their
> arrival!).
> > It
> > > was apparently during the channel crossing that he came up with the
> > > quotation he is most remembered for, "We are like sailors who must
> > rebuild
> > > their ship on the open sea, never able to dismantle it in dry-dock and
> to
> > > reconstruct it there out of the best materials.”
> > >
> > > It's a pretty good description of the way Isotype works--the system is
> > okay
> > > for giving you here and now, but it has to convey negation and
> > > conditionality through red circles and triangles, which are only mean
> > that
> > > if you already know that they do. It seems to me that Neurath is
> > > essentially pursuing the same problem as Rolf, in exactly the same
> > > context--how do you get children to go from non-symbolic appreciations
> of
> > > art to higher sorts? And it seems to me that intrinsically linguistic
> > > systems, like negation and conditionality, are key.
> > >
> > > David Kellogg
> > > Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
> > >
> > >
> > > On 30 May 2014 00:13, Rolf Steier <rolf.steier@intermedia.uio.no>
> wrote:
> > >
> > > > David and Ed, I'm going to think about this a little more but first
> > thank
> > > > you for these thoughtful responses,
> > > > rolf
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > On Wed, May 28, 2014 at 8:16 PM, Ed Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Rolf
> > > > >
> > > > >        Thanks for giving me an opportunity to think more about
> > mimesis.
> > > > > Some rambling follows:
> > > > >
> > > > >      Gebauer and Wulf in Memesis (around p315 there is a summary of
> > > much
> > > > > of what I am paraphrasing/interpreting) suggest that mimesis
> concerns
> > > the
> > > > > making  [I think here about your conversation with Huw about
> > > 'discovery'
> > > > > and 'making'] of symbolic worlds with, for instance, gesture, Such
> > > worlds
> > > > > have an existence of their own; i.e. they can be understood from
> > within
> > > > in
> > > > > their own terms. These symbolic worlds are transformations of a
> prior
> > > > world
> > > > > (the world of 'Others') into the world of 'I/we.'  Mimesis is
> > realized,
> > > > in
> > > > > essence, as a dialogic activity (I don't think this necessarily
> > > excludes
> > > > > narration, but I could be wrong) taken by participants, a deed or
> > > doing.
> > > > In
> > > > > this frame Mimetic Gesturing is one way of transforming the
> 'Other';
> > > > > however depiction (as distinct from Mimetic Gesturing) seems
> another.
> > > > >
> > > > >     So, perhaps (and this is complete speculation) the girls have
> > > > > purposively intertwined their depiction of the body of the figure
> in
> > > the
> > > > > work with its title to produce/make, in their eyes, a 'standalone'
> > > > > dialogical event (or symbolic world). Perhaps, the gesturing is for
> > the
> > > > > self and/or friend (I mean I/we). In any case, in this framing the
> > > > > transformation has its roots in the object of representation and is
> > > > > realized in the gesture and its uptake by the recipient. So your
> > > > questions
> > > > > below are critical.
> > > > >
> > > > >     I hope this makes some sort of sense as I am still thinking
> about
> > > > > mimesis and depiction.
> > > > >
> > > > > Best
> > > > >
> > > > > Ed
> > > > >
> > > > > On May 27, 2014, at  4:24 PM, Rolf Steier wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > > Hi Ed,
> > > > > > Thank you for asking this because I had been reflecting some
> after
> > > > > sending the previous email and thought this topic might need more
> > > > > discussion. I view mimesis as one form of gestural depiction.
> Streeck
> > > > > defines Mimetic Gesturing as “the performance of gestures to depict
> > > > > physical acts or behavior” (p 144 of Gesturecraft).
> > > > > >
> > > > > > I absolutely agree that posing with an artwork can be interpreted
> > as
> > > > > mimesis. Where this becomes more complex (and I think
> interesting!) -
> > > Is
> > > > > when we ask what it is that is being depicted? If we use Episode 1
> > from
> > > > the
> > > > > article (Figure 6 on p160) - it might be that the girls are
> depicting
> > > the
> > > > > body of the figure in the work. Another interpretation could be
> that
> > > they
> > > > > are depicting the painting itself (with the implication that they
> are
> > > > > acknowledging the intentionality of the artist in forming her own
> > > > > depiction). I believe that at some point in this interaction, the
> > girls
> > > > are
> > > > > implicitly acknowledging the intentionality of the artist because
> the
> > > > girl
> > > > > on the left incorporates the title of the work (Four Artists) into
> > her
> > > > > interpretation. I chose to use the term ‘posing gesture’ as a form
> of
> > > > > gestural depiction that is distinct from mimesis. I think that
> > > > > relationships between the artist, figure, artwork, and visitors are
> > > > complex
> > > > > and that some aspect of these relationships might be lost if we
> > > interpret
> > > > > it only as a gesture “depicting a physical act.” There is also the
> > > issue
> > > > of
> > > > > who the gesture is for (the self, the friend, or both). Perhaps
> this
> > > > > contradicts my previous email a little, but thank you for asking me
> > to
> > > > > reflect on it again.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Ed - what do you think? Maybe there is a broader question here
> > about
> > > > the
> > > > > object of representation.. what a gesture is of? and who it is for?
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > > On Tue, May 27, 2014 at 9:15 PM, Ed Wall <ewall@umich.edu>
> wrote:
> > > > > > Rolf
> > > > > >
> > > > > >       If you would, could you say more why you think 'depiction'
> > > rather
> > > > > than 'mimesis' better captures the dialogic relationship between
> the
> > > > > participants. An example from your paper would be helpful.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Ed Wall
> > > > > >
> > > > > > On May 27, 2014, at  8:14 AM, Rolf Steier wrote:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > > Hello David,
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Thank you for your comments and for sharing your book as well.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > You noted that you found the idea of young people posing for
> > > Flickr a
> > > > > > > little depressing - and I can certainly understand this. Not to
> > add
> > > > to
> > > > > this
> > > > > > > depression, but remember that few young people even visit
> museums
> > > at
> > > > > all
> > > > > > > outside of school visits! I don’t think that ‘flickr’ was a
> > > > > particularly
> > > > > > > large motivator in the end. The most surprising finding that
> led
> > to
> > > > > this
> > > > > > > study was that visitors “pose” naturally. Many many people when
> > > > > approaching
> > > > > > > Munch’s “The Scream” would bring their hands to their faces to
> > > > > “scream” as
> > > > > > > a part of normal museum practice. I think the exciting thing is
> > > > > building
> > > > > > > off of this natural tendency to create richer engagements and
> > > > > conversations
> > > > > > > with and about the art- Not to replace interactions with the
> > works
> > > > with
> > > > > > > photo taking activities. Although it is also interesting to see
> > > what
> > > > > > > expectations youth bring to these experiences.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > You also provided a few questions that I wanted to follow up
> on.
> > > You
> > > > > > > mention a distinction between “mimesis” and “depiction” that I
> > > think
> > > > is
> > > > > > > really interesting. I actually spent a great deal of time
> > debating
> > > > the
> > > > > > > appropriate concept to use to describe these activities and I
> > think
> > > > > both
> > > > > > > are appropriate and share subtle distinctions. I agree that
> > > ‘mimesis’
> > > > > > > implies a dialogic relationship between the participant and the
> > > > > artwork -
> > > > > > > but I would also argue that ‘depiction’ better captures the
> > > dialogic
> > > > > > > relationship between the participants. I used the concept of
> > > > depiction
> > > > > to
> > > > > > > be consistent with Streeck’s framework.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > You also mention that assuming gestures are either iconic or
> > > deictic
> > > > > > > suggests that artwork does not have ideal content? Maybe you
> can
> > > > > elaborate
> > > > > > > on what you mean by ideal content? I hope that I didn’t give
> the
> > > > > impression
> > > > > > > that I feel visitor gestures are limited to these types (A goal
> > of
> > > > this
> > > > > > > article was to introduce posing as a unique gestural activity).
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Thank you!
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > On Tue, May 27, 2014 at 12:18 AM, David Kellogg <
> > > > dkellogg60@gmail.com
> > > > > >wrote:
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > >> I think I'd like to try to tie the discussion of Rolf Steier's
> > > > > intriguing
> > > > > > >> article to a book we published in January here in Korea, a
> book
> > > > which
> > > > > is
> > > > > > >> also related to the discussion of Vygotsky, the Imagination,
> and
> > > > > > >> Creativity.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> Since we are discussing posing and artworks, let me provide
> the
> > > > cover
> > > > > of
> > > > > > >> our book, a painting by the Russian children's portraitist
> > Nikolai
> > > > > > >> Bogdanov-Belsky.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> http://www.aladin.co.kr/shop/wproduct.aspx?ISBN=8994445536
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> The book contains three very different works by Vygotsky on
> > > > > creativity and
> > > > > > >> imagination, which we translated into Korean: his "popular
> > > science"
> > > > > account
> > > > > > >> ("Imagination and Creativity in the Child", which was
> published
> > in
> > > > > JREEP in
> > > > > > >> 2004), "Imagination and Creativity in Adolescence", which was
> > > > > published in
> > > > > > >> "Pedology of the Adolescent" and which can be found in the
> > > Vygotsky
> > > > > Reader
> > > > > > >> (Blackwell, 1994) and "Imagination and its Development in
> > > > Childhood",
> > > > > part
> > > > > > >> of which appears in Volume One of the English Collected Works.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> But the cover painting really says it all in gesture: Vygotsky
> > > > > asks--and
> > > > > > >> answers--the question of why one form of creativity after
> > another
> > > is
> > > > > > >> exhausted, when the child's imagination is still developing
> > > > > vigorously. The
> > > > > > >> child poses. Then, at a certain point, the child becomes
> > > > > disillusioned with
> > > > > > >> mere posing and becomes interested in drawing. The child
> draws.
> > > > Then,
> > > > > at a
> > > > > > >> certain point (usually right when the child appears to be
> making
> > > > real
> > > > > > >> progress), the child becomes disillusioned with drawing and
> > takes
> > > up
> > > > > > >> writing. The child writes. Then, at a certain point (usually,
> as
> > > > > captured
> > > > > > >> by Bogdanov-Belsky, right when the child begins to learn how
> to
> > > > write
> > > > > > >> compositions in school) the child becomes disillusioned. The
> now
> > > > > powerless
> > > > > > >> and disillusioned daydream, which we extravagantly call
> > > > > "imagination", is
> > > > > > >> all that is left.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> I liked the article. I loved the idea that recreating a
> painting
> > > as
> > > > a
> > > > > > >> "tableau vivant" includes both an external plane (dialogue)
> and
> > > and
> > > > > > >> internal one (narrative). I thought the ability of the author
> to
> > > > > recover a
> > > > > > >> kind of underlying structure of pose, comparison, focus, and
> > > > > adjustment
> > > > > > >> from the careful analysis of two incidents was actually very
> > > > > convincing and
> > > > > > >> shows the power of a theoretically informed analysis over a
> > > > > statistically
> > > > > > >> equipped but merely empirical one. I also find this underlying
> > > > > structure
> > > > > > >> far more helpful than the usual vague talk about
> extra-corporeal
> > > > > artistic
> > > > > > >> experience and reflection that we get, even in the work of
> > > Bakhtin.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> But I confess, I found the idea that children spend their days
> > in
> > > > > museums
> > > > > > >> recreating paintings with their bodies for a Flickr account a
> > > little
> > > > > > >> depressing. I wonder if there is any evidence that the evident
> > > > > > >> understanding that emerges leads to any actual creativity or
> > even
> > > > any
> > > > > > >> posing outside the museum. Perhaps, if it doesn't, that is a
> > good
> > > > > thing:
> > > > > > >> Munch, in addition to being a smoker, was a notorious
> > depressive.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> Some specific questions:
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> a) On p. 149, the author says that "meaning is embedded in the
> > > > word".
> > > > > > >> Doesn't this imply a conduit metaphor? Isn't it more
> likely--on
> > > the
> > > > > basis
> > > > > > >> of the author's own argument--that the way in which words
> carry
> > > > > cultural
> > > > > > >> meaning is by forcing the hearer to re-enact the meaning
> making
> > > > > itself?
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> b) On p. 151, the author appears to confuse the concept of
> > > metaphor
> > > > > with
> > > > > > >> Lakoff and Johnson's "conceptual metaphor". Also, I can't see
> > how
> > > > > children
> > > > > > >> can develop concepts from metaphors, because it seems to me
> that
> > > in
> > > > > order
> > > > > > >> to have a metaphor you need a concept first.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> c) On p. 152: if we assume that visitor gestures are either
> > iconic
> > > > or
> > > > > > >> deictic, doesn't that suggest that artwork has no ideal
> content
> > at
> > > > > all?
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> d) On p. 152, the bottom: isn't "depiction" more of a
> NARRATIVE
> > > > > stance,
> > > > > > >> while mimesis is a more DIALOGIC one because it places us
> inside
> > > the
> > > > > > >> artwork? Just a thought.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> I remember taking part in an art exhibition in my wife's
> > hometown
> > > of
> > > > > Xi'an
> > > > > > >> in China twenty years ago where we left a huge canvas by the
> > exit
> > > > and
> > > > > > >> invited all the viewers to try to paint something. It was at a
> > big
> > > > > > >> university and some of engineering students tried gamely,
> until
> > > the
> > > > > art
> > > > > > >> students came along and painted everything black.
> Interestingly,
> > > > > though,
> > > > > > >> neither the engineering students nor the art students tried to
> > > > > reproduce
> > > > > > >> any of the artworks--they were more interested in looking out
> > the
> > > > > window
> > > > > > >> than in looking back at the exhibition.
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> David Kellogg
> > > > > > >> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >> On 23 May 2014 01:09, Vadeboncoeur, Jennifer <
> > > j.vadeboncoeur@ubc.ca
> > > > >
> > > > > > >> wrote:
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > > >>> Dear XMCA,
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> Rolf Steier is now on XMCA, and his article "Posing the
> > question"
> > > > is
> > > > > open
> > > > > > >>> on the T and F website:
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/hmca20/.U3zs4Sjsq24
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> Just click on the green button to the right side of the
> > article.
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> There is loads to talk about, and one question that comes to
> > mind
> > > > is
> > > > > in
> > > > > > >>> relation to the museum installation as a design experiment.
> In
> > > what
> > > > > sense
> > > > > > >>> is it a design experiment? What does it make visible? How is
> > > > learning
> > > > > > >>> shaped by access to this experience in a museum?
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> More questions?
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>> Best - jen
> > > > > > >>>
> > > > > > >>
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
>