This chapter illustrates a transformation in audiovisual culture by comparing two orchestral crescendos: the introduction to Haydn’s Symphony No. 6 (1761), and the transition to the finale of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 (1808). Whereas naked-eye observation of nature and painting provided primary reference frames for “seeing” the former as a sunrise, the world-making powers of optical technologies framed otherworldly perceptions of the latter. Through an example drawn from Mozart’s Idomeneo, the chapter also introduces the study of “audiovisual culture” as a means to examine not only mixed media, or the mixed condition of media traditionally considered pure, but also processes of learning and cultivation that take place between or across the senses.
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