In our culture, the concept of the ‘image’ is usually associated with that of the surface. A picture is flat and hangs on the wall, that seems natural. But there is also the concept of sculpture, which indicates that pictures are not always surfaces. A sculpture that represents a person, for example, is also a picture – but not a flat picture, but a spatial picture, a spatial image. These two basic forms of the image do not simply coexist historically, but there is a hierarchy in which the planar image is superior to the spatial image. The spatial image seems to be of low quality. Why? Because one can stand at a distance from the surface image, can grasp everything at a glance, as it were, and is therefore sovereign in relation to the image. The spatial image always has an invisible side, an irritating corporeality, it seems to be too close to the world of things… The lecture will outline the history of this subordination of the spatial image to the surface image by means of a few positions from philosophy and aesthetics.
Dr. phil. habil. Jens Schröter will hold the chair of “Media Cultural Studies” at the University of Bonn from April 2015. In 2010-2014 he was professor for theory and practice of multimedia systems at the University of Siegen, where he was responsible for two DFG projects, among others. His research interests include theory and history of digital media, theory and history of photography, television series, three-dimensional images, intermediality and critical media theory. Schröter has published numerous articles and books in this field. Fellowships and guest professorships have taken him to the universities of Szeged (Hungary), Guangzhou (China) and most recently to the DFG Research School “Media Cultures of Computer Simulation” at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg.
A lecture to the exhibition “Dealing with Surfaces”.