What Do Pictures Want?: The Lives and Loves of Images

What Do Pictures Want The Lives and Loves of Images Why do we have such extraordinarily powerful responses toward the images and pictures we see in everyday life Why do we behave as if pictures were alive possessing the power to influence us to deman

  • Title: What Do Pictures Want?: The Lives and Loves of Images
  • Author: W.J.T. Mitchell
  • ISBN: 9780226532486
  • Page: 285
  • Format: Paperback
  • Why do we have such extraordinarily powerful responses toward the images and pictures we see in everyday life Why do we behave as if pictures were alive, possessing the power to influence us, to demand things from us, to persuade us, seduce us, or even lead us astray According to W J T Mitchell, we need to reckon with images not just as inert objects that convey meaninWhy do we have such extraordinarily powerful responses toward the images and pictures we see in everyday life Why do we behave as if pictures were alive, possessing the power to influence us, to demand things from us, to persuade us, seduce us, or even lead us astray According to W J T Mitchell, we need to reckon with images not just as inert objects that convey meaning but as animated beings with desires, needs, appetites, demands, and drives of their own What Do Pictures Want explores this idea and highlights Mitchell s innovative and profoundly influential thinking on picture theory and the lives and loves of images Ranging across the visual arts, literature, and mass media, Mitchell applies characteristically brilliant and wry analyses to Byzantine icons and cyberpunk films, racial stereotypes and public monuments, ancient idols and modern clones, offensive images and found objects, American photography and aboriginal painting Opening new vistas in iconology and the emergent field of visual culture, he also considers the importance of Dolly the Sheep who, as a clone, fulfills the ancient dream of creating a living image and the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9 11, which, among other things, signifies a new and virulent form of iconoclasm.What Do Pictures Want offers an immensely rich and suggestive account of the interplay between the visible and the readable A work by one of our leading theorists of visual representation, it will be a touchstone for art historians, literary critics, anthropologists, and philosophers alike A treasury of episodes generally overlooked by art history and visual studies that turn on images that walk by themselves and exert their own power over the living Norman Bryson, Artforum

    One thought on “What Do Pictures Want?: The Lives and Loves of Images”

    1. I started reading this book quite a few months ago, but other things became urgent and got in the way. All the same, I was determined to get back to it and had even sent my daughter a quote from the start of it to put into her honours thesis on Japanese food advertising and food taboos about the power of images, “A similar (and simpler) demonstration is offered by one of my art history colleagues: when students scoff at the idea of a magical relation between a picture and what it represents, a [...]

    2. This writer is really interesting and really solid. The problem with this book is it is a bunch of discrete essays / chapters / catalog essays rather than a coherent arguments. My favorites were the introduction/preface, where he pretended he was writing a coherent book, and a few of the chapters here and there. I'd definitely read any other essay of his I come across, but I definitely wish he had pursued a more definite path through the territory he defined in his introduction. Still I'd recomm [...]

    3. My biggest problem with this book was the author's credibility. I'm sorry but when you contradict yourself because you're trying to make religion look bad (but then finally admit that it wasn't the way you said originally), call our government fascist, and promote genetic mutations as an exciting new form of art, I just can't really put much stock in what you say. Other than that, the book was interesting.

    4. 2007 review:I actually only read part one of this book. There are 3 parts. I do plan on reading all parts someday though because I found the first part interesting (in parts-other parts too hard to grasps). The title was basically what I read about-asking pictures what they want an discussing the possible answers. It had some very intriguing ideas.

    5. Had a hard time getting through the first half of this book, then the second half things got more specific, discussing actual mediums, works of art etc. I finished it about a week ago, and find the ideas are still bouncing around in my heada interesting read, taken with a grain of salt.

    6. I didn't read every one of his essays/chapters but Mitchell presents an interesting argument on the wants of images, rather than the meaning of images. It is a compelling piece of visual culture studies. The first two chapters can be read here: indiana/~engweb/media/

    7. Sometimes the concepts required re-reading and extensive thought in various contexts, however the style was very readable and the ideas most interesting. The author is both likable and respectable as a narrator and academic.

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