Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Inadvertent ImagesA History of Photographic Apparitions$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Peter Geimer

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780226471877

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226471907.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 25 July 2021

Visible/Invisible

Visible/Invisible

Critique of a Dichotomy

Chapter:
(p.140) 5 Visible/Invisible
Source:
Inadvertent Images
Author(s):

Peter Geimer

, Gerrit Jackson
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226471907.003.0006

When more recent studies examine the “visualization of the invisible,” they generally adopt, perpetuate, and consolidate a nineteenth-century terminology that even the historic protagonists themselves used to outline a set of open questions rather than to explicate their visual practice. This chapter shows that the classical division of the universe of photographic depiction into a visible and an invisible part is questionable or at least requires explanation. In this model “visible” and “invisible” are two states of the same object, alternating as one switches an electrical circuit from “off” to “on” and back. The phenomena in question are visible at some moments and invisible at others, but regardless of which of the two states they are in when we encounter them, they are always the same phenomena. The realm of the “invisible” is subject to the same laws that govern the familiar visible world, the only difference being that the phenomena it comprises are not—not yet—visible. But the process of visualization is not a translation into visibility, not a transfer that simply leaves the integrity of the object being transferred unaffected: Visualization means making something visible that was previously not present at all in this form.

Keywords:   vision, visualization, visualization of the invisible, visual practice

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.