Saturday, August 09, 2008
Negation of negation
"One of the minimal definitions of a modernist painting concerns the function of its frame. The frame of the painting in front of us is not its true frame; there is another, invisible, frame, the frame implied by the structure of the painting, the frame that enframes our perception of the painting, and these two frames by definition never overlap.....an invisible gap separates them. The pivotal content of the painting is not communicated in its visible part, but located in this dis-location of the two frames, in the gap that separates them. This dimension in-between-the-frames is obvious in Kazimir Malevich ( Black square on white background), in Edward Hopper, and again in Edvard Munch's Madonna..........The frame is always redoubled: the frame within reality is always linked to another frame enframing reality itself. Once introduced, the gap between reality and appearance is thus immediately complicated, reflected-into-itself: once we get a glimpse, through the Frame, of the other dimension, reality itself turns into appearance. In other words, things do not simply appear, they appear to appear. That is why the negation of negation does not bring us to a simple flat affirmation: once things start to appear as what they are not, creating an illusion; they can also appear to just appear, concealing the fact that they are what they appear to be".
Slavoj Zizek, The Parallax View