Flesh of Images, The: Merleau-Ponty between Painting and Cinema (SUNY series in Contemporary Continental Philosophy)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Highlights Merleau-Ponty’s interest in film and connects it to his aesthetic theory.
In The Flesh of Images, Mauro Carbone begins with the point that Merleau-Ponty’s often misunderstood notion of “flesh” was another way to signify what he also called “Visibility.” Considering vision as creative voyance, in the visionary sense of creating as a particular presence something which, as such, had not been present before, Carbone proposes original connections between Merleau-Ponty and Paul Gauguin, and articulates his own further development of the “new idea of light” that the French philosopher was beginning to elaborate at the time of his sudden death. Carbone connects these ideas to Merleau-Ponty’s continuous interest in cinema—an interest that has been traditionally neglected or circumscribed. Focusing on Merleau-Ponty’s later writings, including unpublished course notes and documents not yet available in English, Carbone demonstrates both that Merleau-Ponty’s interest in film was sustained and philosophically crucial, and also that his thinking provides an important resource for illuminating our contemporary relationship to images, with profound implications for the future of philosophy and aesthetics. Building on his earlier work on Marcel Proust and considering ongoing developments in optical and media technologies, Carbone adds his own philosophical insight into understanding the visual today.
“The elegant style of Carbone’s prose—crafted with a certain cadence and phrasing, an inimitable world of language—nevertheless does not conceal the complexity of his scholarly research.” — Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
The Flesh of Images SUNY series in Contemporary Continental Philosophy ———— Dennis J. Schmidt, editor The Flesh of Images Merleau-Ponty between Painting and Cinema Mauro Carbone Translated by Marta Nijhuis Published by State University of New York Press, Albany La chair des images: Merleau-Ponty entre peinture et cinéma © Librairie Philosophique J. Vrin, Paris, 2011. http://www.vrin.fr © 2015 State University of New York All rights reserved Printed in the United States of America No part
Long Time to Become Wild Gauguin According to Merleau-Ponty, Merleau-Ponty According to Gauguin What Flesh? Derrida Against Merleau-Ponty In the beginning of what was to remain the last chapter of the unfinished work The Prose of the World,1 Merleau-Ponty reminds us that “[n]owadays we encourage every form of illusive and allusive expression, especially pictorial expression, and in particular the art of the ‘primitives,’ the drawings of the children and madmen. [. . .] But [. . .] the resort to
bodies—even those that are drawn or painted—are sculptural bodies. “Sculptural form”31 is indeed the expression Gauguin himself uses in the manuscript of Noa Noa, in order to designate the carnal kinship he believes he sees between the body of King Pomare’s woman and a temple’s pediment. Still, in Noa Noa—apropos of the woman he is about to paint in Vahine no te tiare (1891)—he writes that her mouth appears to him as if it had been “modelled by a sculptor.”33 Similarly, he observes that
for the creative role of montage, which he considered to be cinema’s main form of expression. “One day Pudovkin took a close-up of Mosjoukin with a completely impassive expression and projected it after showing: first, a bowl of soup, then, a young woman lying dead in her coffin, and, last, a child playing with a teddy-bear. The first thing noticed was that Mosjoukin seemed to be looking at the bowl, the young woman, and the child, and the next one noted that he was looking pensively at the dish,
in turn a most interesting one, for it seems to be chosen so as to avoid any references to either a subject or an object, and to gather together activity and passivity. Indeed, in the pages of The Visible and the Invisible interrupted by his sudden death, Merleau-Ponty writes that the element of “Visibility” belongs “properly neither to the body qua fact nor to the world qua fact,” thus, because of it, “the seer and the visible reciprocate one another and we no longer know which sees and which is