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Camera, noun.

1. Camera is both the specific implementation of an apparatus and a broader instance of a ubiquitous system in a photographic (even postphotographic) milieu typified by its revolutionary status as the technization of science as “vision” or image.
a. The camera posits a monumental possibility by restructuring events outside of history itself. With cameras “[…] we are therefore dealing with an absurd omniscience and an absurd omnipotence: Cameras know everything and are able to do everything in a universe that was programmed in advance for this knowledge and ability.” (Towards a Philosophy of Photography, 2000, p. 68)

2. Camera is the realization of a specific “program” of the reflexive expectations engineered into its conceptualization, it “lies in wait for photography” (ibid., p. 21).

3. Camera emerges from carefully strategized assumptions about its technical operations – its “program.”
a. “The camera’s program provides for the realization of its capabilities and, in the process, for the use of society as a feedback mechanism for its progressive improvement. As mentioned previously, there are further programs behind this one (that of the photographic industry, of the industrial complex, of the socio-economic apparatuses), through the entire hierarchy of which there flows the enormous intention of programming society to act in the interests of the progressive improvement of these apparatuses. This intention can be seen in every single photograph and can be decoded from it.” (ibid., p. 46)

4. Camera is a paradox.
a. “The program of the camera has to be rich, otherwise the game would soon be over. The possibilities contained within it have to transcend the ability of the functionary to exhaust them, i.e., the competence of the camera has to be greater than that of its functionaries. No photographer, not even the totality of all photographers, can entirely get to the bottom of what a correctly programmed camera is up to. It is a black box.” (ibid., p. 27)

5. Camera possesses the possibility of its own negation.
a. “Freedom is playing against the camera.” (ibid., p. 80)

Original article by Timothy Druckrey in Flusseriana

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camera.txt · Last modified: 2021/11/05 17:47 (external edit)