Thursday, February 14, 2008

ekphrastic hope, fear, and indifference

i may have discovered what i'm trying to say about my pictures (jeez, i really should use the term "images" -- and there you have a hint of my ekphrastic fear, my fear of realizing that there is nothing to my work with images because they are "just" pictures -- somehow, "picture" conjures something far less magical than does "image. i want magic, however childish, however cool).

WJT Mitchell discusses ekphrasis in Picture Theory. Using both Erwin Panofsky's Perspective and Symbolic Form and Mitchell's work on Ekphrasis, i may have begun to discover something a C's audience might want to worry in the context of the pictorial turn. maybe.

but i'm also drawn to a brief entry on Jeff Rice's book, The Rhetoric of Cool (which i will now have to purchase and read; darn you, smart AND cool guy!) that leads me to imagine that the wandering invention i've been doing so far is potentially valid in itself (i almost always prefer the early, rambling draft over the more polished performance. surprised, anyone?). valid, as in, cool. for the reviewer, "[c]ool, [. . .] is defined through association across several different and sometimes conflicting meanings." so but it's about chora, unbounded, limitless, self-indulgent space that may speak of networked experience of (in the case of my images) the familiar PRADA logo, the Louis Vuitton logo and iconic merchandise (baggage; i criticize, but i desire it, as well. it's sad, but that's what magic/cool can do, create and sustain desire). for now, the free-associating is working for me. it's that audience i'm worrying. maybe i shouldn't. maybe i should resist my own ekphrastic fear in order to sustain the fiction of my "important" images. just wandering . . .

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