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The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical…
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The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (Penguin Great… (alkuperäinen julkaisuvuosi 1936; vuoden 2008 painos)

– tekijä: Walter Benjamin, J.A. Underwood (Kääntäjä)

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
6531026,126 (3.91)2
One of the most important works of cultural theory ever written, Walter Benjamin's groundbreaking essay explores how the age of mass media means audiences can listen to or see a work of art repeatedly - and what the troubling social and political implications of this are. Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are.… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:whitealchemist
Teoksen nimi:The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (Penguin Great Ideas)
Kirjailijat:Walter Benjamin
Muut tekijät:J.A. Underwood (Kääntäjä)
Info:Penguin (2008), Paperback, 128 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
Arvio (tähdet):
Avainsanoja:visual art, critical theory

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The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (tekijä: Walter Benjamin) (1936)

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Walter Benjamin, appare oggi come una delle personalità più originali della cultura europea nel periodo tra le due guerre. I cinque saggi raccolti in questo volume, che appartengono agli ultimi anni della sua attività, sono legati da un unico intento, sia che Benjamin indaghi i problemi dell'arte di ma sa, in relazione all'avvento delle nuove tecniche di riproduzione, ia che commenti la validità delle esperienze dell'avanguardia o il teatro e la lirica di Brecht.
Alla vigilia della seconda guerra mondiale, quando ogni tentativo di conservare immutata l'eredita della tradizione umanistica (il «peso dei tesori che gravano sull'umanità») appariva ormai condannato all'ipocrisia o all'estetismo, Benjamin cerca di individuare quei tratti nuovi dell'esperienza dell'opera d'arte che avrebbero potuto essere consegnati senza vergogna a un'umanità futura. ( )
  BiblioLorenzoLodi | Aug 9, 2019 |



One of the most influential essays on art and aesthetics in the twentieth century, Walter Benjamin's The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction, written in 1935, points out how works of art are diminished by mechanical reproduction. To share a modest taste of the great German philosopher's thinking outlined in this influential essay, here are a number of quotes along with my comments:

“In principle a work of art has always been reproducible. Mechanical reproduction of a work of art, however, represents something new.” ---------- Benjamin is speaking of film and magazines. Of course, the reproduction of works of art nowadays on the internet makes all art available to all people at all time. This can cut both ways - on the downside, the copy isn't even close to the original (we judge a ten foot canvas by a ten inch photo) but I greatly appreciate how I can view art from around the world instantly. Not to mention that I listen to hours of string quartet music and world music every single day in the comfort of my own home. If films are added to the mix, I strongly suspect nearly everybody reading this likewise benefits from the arts being reproduced mechanically and electronically.



“Even the most perfect reproduction of a work of art is lacking in one element: its presence in time and space, its unique existence at the place where it happens to be.” ---------- We have to go to Kyoto to experience the real Zen garden; not nearly the same thing as looking at a photograph.



“Process reproduction is more independent of the original than manual reproduction. For example, in photography, process reproduction can bring out those aspects of the original that are unattainable to the naked eye yet accessible to the lens, which is adjustable and chooses its angle at will.” ---------- The camera highlighting unique features of the human face can make the photograph both remarkable and unforgettable, especially true if the face is the face of a celebrity.



“And photographic reproduction, with the aid of certain processes, such as enlargement or slow motion, can capture images which escape natural vision.” ---------- As per this photo capturing a moment of dynamic movement in a dance.



“Technical reproduction can put the copy of the original into situations which would be out of reach for the original itself. Above all, it enables the original to meet the beholder halfway, be it in the form of a photograph or a phonograph record.” ---------- Andy Warhol grasped the power of rendering an artistic image by his own artistic enhancement.



“The situations into which the product of mechanical reproduction can be brought may not touch the actual work of art, yet the quality of its presence is always depreciated.” ---------- I viewed this stunning Winslow Homer at an exhibition in New York. The extraordinary power of the painting almost put me on my knees. The photo captures only a very small fraction of the artist's work, thus the truth of Benjamin's words: the art is depreciated.



“This holds not only for the art work but also, for instance, for a landscape which passes in review before the spectator in a movie.” ---------- What's true for art is also true for nature. For example, the desert in this film is stripped of its overwhelming presence for the moviegoer.



“One might subsume the eliminated element in the term “aura” and go on to say: that which withers in the age of mechanical reproduction is the aura of the work of art.” ---------- According to Benjamin, each work of art contains its own "aura," an element completely lacking in reproduction.



“One might generalize by saying: the technique of reproduction detaches the reproduced object from the domain of tradition. By making many reproductions it substitutes a plurality of copies for a unique existence.” ---------- Oceanic tribal art displayed in a museum. Quite a difference from the tribespeople who used this art as part of their religious and communal rituals.




“To pry an object from its shell, to destroy its aura, is the mark of a perception whose “sense of the universal equality of things” has increased to such a degree that it extracts it even from a unique object by means of reproduction.” --------- Statues of saints on entry in medieval cathedral in Koeln, Germany via a photo that eliminates the cathedral!



“The film actor lacks the opportunity of the stage actor to adjust to the audience during his performance, since he does not present his performance to the audience in person.” ---------- Every live performance is unique and different every single night, in part, based on the audience's participation and response, an element completely lacking in film.



“All efforts to render politics aesthetic culminate in one thing: war.” ----------In a Nazi rally, aspects of aesthetics were incorporated so as to bring such a great mass of people under the will of the Führer. Even visitors from other countries reported how moved they were by such a spectacle. The Nazis and their war machine were the prime example for Walter Benjamin. The great thinker, one of the most sensitive souls in all of Europe, committed suicide to avoid abduction by the Nazis.



( )
  Glenn_Russell | Nov 13, 2018 |
Walter Benjamin's work fascinates me, and his chapter "The Flâneur" in his unfinished tome, The Arcades Project, was the inspiration for my research philosophy (or how, as a political scientist, I can work while being disillusioned with contemporary politics). This collection consists of three essays translated by J.A. (Jim) Underwood: The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction; Franz Kafka: On the Tenth Anniversary of His Death; and Picturing Proust. I have not read Proust's work, so the third essay felt a little like name-dropping, and I was the uneducated who had no idea who Benjamin was talking about. I am somewhat familiar with Kafka's work, so the essay was enlightening and provided an interesting background on Kafka. The first essay, which gives its name to the collection, I found to fit the theme of much of my experience with social media, and I was comfortable with the content. That is not to say that I didn't learn anything, however, as Benjamin's ideas would easily be revived today as "The Work of Art in the Age of Digital Reproduction". My immediate thought was to Da Vinci's Mona Lisa, one of the most over-rated tourist attractions, according to Techly's Joe Frost. I tend to agree. I was surprised how small it is. But here Benjamin comes to the rescue: Mona Lisa has an "aura". With the invention of film, the aura disappears. The camera becomes the audience. Stardom replaces the aura - fans are in awe of the film star, rather than being in awe of the event. Social media does something similar. It is more about creating an aura around the holiday for others, rather than enjoying the viewing in the moment. While I don't pretend to know anything much about Walter Benjamin's work just yet, I am already a fan. But as the camera hides all of the apparatus of film-making beyond the lens, unlike the theatre which forces us to ignore the reality that surrounds the stage, so too is social media. But in terms of marginalia, I found myself most out of my depth with the knowledge of Benjamin's endless name-dropping. Had I a clue who most of these people were (contemporary art, film, and literary critics, I presume), I would have a better understanding of the essays. One thing that I have learnt, especially in attempting to understand an author's oeuvre, is that a sound knowledge of the author's times and contemporaries is essential. Reading Hemingway, I discovered Scott Fitzgerald, Ford Maddox Ford, Gertrude Stein, et al. Reading Calvino, I realise I have much to learn. Reading Plato, I am pleased that my reading of the Stoics, Heraclitus, Homer, Hesiod, and even Virgil have given me enough of this knowledge not to gloss over names as I might with non-English phrases, but to feel like I know something about what I am reading. Whether I am missing Mortimer Adler's point is another story, but I feel that if one wants to study another's oeuvre, one must study more than just the author's work. And that is what makes my latest ventures into Italo Calvino and Walter Benjamin so exciting. I am leaving my Anglophone shores far behind as I paddle off into the unknown. Where I land I do not know. But I do know I enjoy Walter Benjamin's work immensely. Whether I can bring myself to tackle The Arcades Project's 1,000-odd pages anytime soon remains to be seen. And while I was hoping that my fascination with Benjamin made me somewhat original, I was saddened to learn that, once again, I am simply late to the trend! ( )
  madepercy | Oct 10, 2018 |
Indeholder "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction", "Franz Kafka: On the Tenth Anniversary of His Death", "Picturing Proust".

"The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" handler om ???
"Franz Kafka: On the Tenth Anniversary of His Death" handler om ???
"Picturing Proust" handler om ???

Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) tænkte over hvad muligheden for massereproduktion ville gøre ved kunsten og kunstværker. Meget tankevækkende lille essay. En af bygningerne i IT-Parken på Katrinebjerg er opkaldt efter ham. ( )
  bnielsen | Nov 7, 2016 |
Succinct and clever. I like the concepts of cult and aura as applied to art. The tie to the aesthetics of war and politics in the end is spooky but appropriate. ( )
  albertgoldfain | Jul 9, 2015 |
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» Lisää muita tekijöitä (24 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Benjamin, Walterensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetvahvistettu
Creus, JaumeKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Underwood, J. A.Kääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Yvars, J. F.Toimittajamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
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Contains only the essay "The Work of Art in the Period of Technical Reproduction" and no others. So please don't combine with the " other essays".
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia (4)

One of the most important works of cultural theory ever written, Walter Benjamin's groundbreaking essay explores how the age of mass media means audiences can listen to or see a work of art repeatedly - and what the troubling social and political implications of this are. Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are.

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