Tuesday, November 4, 2008

From The Legible To The Sensible

Fig. 1. Suzanne Opton - Soldier: Claxton, 120 days in Afghanistan, Fort Drum, NY, 2005, 2005

'The aesthetic regime of the arts stands in contrast with the representative regime. I call this regime aesthetic because the identification of art no longer occurs via a division within ways of looking and making, but it is based on distinguishing a sensible mode of being specific to artistic products. The word aesthetics does not refer to a theory of sensibility, taste, and pleasure for art amateurs. It strictly refers to the specific mode of the being of objects of art. In the aesthetic regime, artistic phenomena are identified by their adherence to a specific regime of the sensible, which is extricated from its ordinary connections and is inhabited by a heterogeneous power, a power of a form of thought that has become foreign to itself: a product identical with something not produced, knowledge transformed into non-knowledge, logos identical with pathos, the intention of the unintentional, etc.'

Jacques Rancière (The Distribution of the Sensible)