Friday, 2 January 2015

You Tweet It, I'll Use It

I'm hoping today's blogs can be read as a form of free jazz, or contact improvisation. I am riffing on ideas from Aaron Meskin, a really sharp academic from Leeds who charts the intriguing collision of comic books and hardcore philosophy. Like a contact improviser with a bad leg, I'm leaning on him: like Ornette Coleman, I'm blowing into my ideas trumpet in the vague hope we'll get a tune. 

I'm sorry if you are hoping for more than wittering... I like to show my workings because, in the unlikely event that anyone reads this and can spot my mistakes, they can point them out easily. Besides, I can either pretend I was being ironic or, even better, shout that it is all a work in progress and beneath critique.

(Note to theatre makers: see how irritating that excuse is now?)

Back to ontology. Here's a question. 

This photograph of a handsome young man who would later become the victim of the lack of journalistic ethics in the BBC is...

a) A multiple without an instance
b) An exemplar-based multiple
c) Very arousing
d) A memory of a better time before the foreigns took over pop music?

That was a trick question. If you thought d), you are a member of UKIP and I don't want you reading my blog. You racist.

However, the question of a) or b) is a little complicated, although the picture does give some clues. Since Sir Cliff doesn't look like he has had a turkey transplanted onto his neck, it must have been taken before he released Wired For Sound. The terrible skating accident he had during the making of the video led to his sudden ageing, turning the Peter Pan of Pop into the picture that Keith Richards keeps in his attic to ensure eternal youth.

So, Cliff's photographer was risking the waves with a pre-digital camera, meaning that the image was captured on film, not as a digital file. Therefore, there is an exemplar - the picture as it was developed. 

This also means that copyright might be more of an issue. 

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