Category Archives: Spectrality

Spectrality – articles







Sites of the Uncanny: Paul Celan, Specularity and the Visual Arts

Sites of the Uncanny: Paul Celan, Specularity and the Visual Arts 

 This is the first book-length study that examines Celan´s impact on visual culture. Exploring poetry´s relation to film, painting and architecture, this study tracks the transformation of Celan in postwar German culture and shows the extent to which his poetics accompany the country´s memory politics after the Holocaust. First study of the transmission of Paul Celan’s lyric poetry to the visual arts Consideration of the reception of Celan through film, painting and architecture Fundamental analysis of the importance of Celan for the ways of remembrance in Germany following the Holocaust

Product details

  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: de Gruyter (20 Aug. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3110191350
  • ISBN-13: 978-3110191356

Portland notes 3

Intermedia, gestures, spectrality, terrain vague

Gesture and performativity in relation to intermedia – the gesture of photography (Flusser)

Terrain vague – Stalker. an inbetween zone. a kind of ghost story.

Blend modes and spectrality (spirit photography)

Blending in The Sandman -Stan Douglas

Blending in Vera Lutter’s photographs – due to long exposure

Tracing gestures – Pierre Bismuth tracing gestures from film and displaying them over a photograph – another form of blending.




Portland notes 2 – Ghost in the machine

links to noise

at some point a trace cannot be distinguished – figure ground problem.  The ground can be viewed as noise and the trace -signal.

link also to forensics

Traces can be linked to narrative – a positivist view of history – evidence.

The spectre is associated with noise (haunted media)  breakdown or technology

Ghost in the machine.

Spectrality – Disputed chronology – neither present nor absent

Portland notes 1

Trace and conceptual blending – Marey’s photographs are blended films

link to the buddhist monk ascending descending hill problem as solved by conceptual blending – film 1 goes up hill, film2 goes down hill.  Superpose films.

link between negative, casting and trace.

Rachael Whiteread –  cast of a space or mould for a wall? positive or negative?  traces on the wall

a bit like a daguerreotype – could be negative or positive depending on the angle or perspective from which it is viewed.

A negative may not be spectral (ref Vera Lutter).  A spectre is in-between positive and negative.