The Tourist #27


“Photography involves obligations. People feel that they must not miss seeing particular scenes or ‘Kodak moments’ since otherwise the photo-opportunities will be missed and forgotten.”

Whereas if we did not have cameras we would have no “obligations”? Wouldn’t we just get more really shit tattoos? “I WAS ERE”? This is a platitudinous stupidity which assumes people are incapable of deciding not to take the same stupid shit boring photos other people have taken? Or that they would be incapable of having any interest outside of the continuous recapitulation of the societally oppressive visual “norm”.

Is it not an obligation to visit the christmas market? To go swimming in the sea? Sunbathing? Eating out? We are obliged not to eat at home because we aren’t at home. We are not obliged to read Barbara Cartland novels if we don’t want to… Are we not failing to make some fairly fundamental distinction here between obligation and choice?

Necessity and Essentiality.

God is necessary but not essential.
God is essential but not neccessary.

Images are essential but not necessary.
Images are necessary but not essential.


Essence? Of Sense? Of Spirit?


Life in its bareness, its animality, or with the addition of something, human. Geist. In all its terror.
The Spirit is worth the risk of its horror because the alternative is inhumanity and reversion to animality.
To accept photography as non ontological but of the doxa, habitus, field… etc.

A spiritual science.

What word do we use to describe, in the way that prayer is to speech, what being human is to merely living? Essential? Necessary? Spiritual? Religious?
This assumes, of course, that we are aiming to be human rather than merely animals?

Art is attention. Taking a photograph is not making one, in the old cliche. Photography plus attention as opposed to lacking attention? Photography lacking human attention is, merely, nature. Photography in the realm of human attention, which is to say the realm of languaged beings, is what? Something else? The beauty is that you cannot tell one from the other. This is the beautiful risk of the photograph. It is nothing, either way.

Attention. Attention is only available to us when what is necessary is already dealt with in some basic way. Necessity must be diminished in consciousness in order to allow for attentiveness? We have, then, to be able to eat and stay warm and so on, in order to use language? Language is supplemental to these basic things. Language proposes art. Being human proposes art. By its very supplemental, essential distanciation and reproduction.

Attention is not possible sub-money. So long as life is the continual suffering of indebtedness then there can be no freedom of attention - this is the greatest trick of the Great Beast.