Gregory Currie: The visible surface: painting, photography, cinema

Professor Gregory Currie (University of York) speaks at the Scottish Aesthetics Forum, 11th December, 2015.

Abstract: Pictures are surfaces with marks on them. Different kinds of pictures have different kinds of marks, produced in different ways. The marks themselves have an interest in painting and drawing which they do not have in photography and cinema. This difference enables us to identify and explain a feature of some pictures which I call “apparent transparency”. This is not the same as Walton-style transparency and pictures which have apparent transparency need not be (and in my view are not) transparent. The interest that marks have in painting are of different kinds depending on whether those marks are co-incident. I explain the notion of co-incidence and use it to highlight some of the aesthetic differences between different kinds of paintings and to extend Wollheim’s notion of twofoldness.