photography Thought for the Week

TFTW #2: Ranciere on representation

TFTW…thought for the week…some quotes to inspire…

Representation is not the act of producing a visible form, but the act of offering an equivalent – something that speech does just as much as photography. The image is not the duplicate of a thing. It is a complex set of relations between the visible and the invisible, the visible and speech, the said and the unsaid. It is not a mere reproduction of what is out there in front of the photographer or the filmmaker. It is always an alteration that occurs in a chain of images which alter it in turn.

Jacques Ranciere, The Emancipated Spectator, trans. by Gregory Elliot (London: Verso, 2009), pp. 93-94.

Thumbnail photo: webtreats/Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license.

1 reply on “TFTW #2: Ranciere on representation”

Representation is a distortion of reality because the photographer decides what to include and what to exclude. Nevertheless, it gives a very small scoop of “the” reality. Without it, we don’t have documentation of the people killed and injured, and the lives dismantled.

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