Pictures of the Mind: Surrealist Photography and Film

Pictures of the Mind: Surrealist Photography and Film

by Ramona Fotiade


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Pictures of the Mind is the first integrated study of Surrealist photography and film, assessing the impact of early experimental practice and theoretical discourse on prominent post-war trends in art house cinema. Roland Barthes's interpretation of the photographic image, alongside Jacques Derrida's concepts of spectrality and trace, underscore an exploration of the recurrent references to the phantomatic aspect of photography and film in Surrealist theoretical writings and practice. The analysis uses Derrida's account of the uncanny to shed light on the Surrealist conception of photographic and film images as mental constructs, or pictures of the mind, rather than mere visual representations. This leads to a consideration of the similarities between the Surrealist conception of beauty as fixed-explosive and Gilles Deleuze's theory of the time-image as applied to Luis Buñuel's films. Ultimately, the impact of Surrealism on post-war cinema is assessed as part of a wider consideration of the status of photographic and filmic images in the age of digital cinema. The elaboration of an aesthetics of spectrality in early Surrealism is shown to have had lasting implications for a range of post-war filmmakers such as Chris Marker, Maya Deren, Nelly Kaplan, Federico Fellini, Andrei Tarkovsky, Jan Svankmajer, Akira Kurosawa, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Guillermo del Toro, Guy Maddin, Terry Gilliam and David Lynch.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783039111299
Publisher: Peter Lang AG, Internationaler Verlag der Wissenschaften
Publication date: 07/31/2018
Series: New Studies in European Cinema , #5
Edition description: New
Pages: 374
Product dimensions: 5.91(w) x 8.86(h) x (d)

About the Author

Ramona Fotiade is Senior Lecturer in French at the University of Glasgow. She has written extensively on Surrealist and experimental cinema and contributed to The Surreal House exhibition at the Barbican Art Gallery in 2010 with articles on film and architecture. She is the author of the Ciné-file film guide to À bout de souffle (2013).

Table of Contents

CONTENTS: Spectral Bodies: Visualizing the Unconscious - Latent Images: Found Objects - Camera Obscura: From Precision Optics to Film - Postmodern Surrealism: Film in the Age of Virtual Reality.

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