Learning from Baroque

Learning from Baroque

Carola Moujan (Université Paris 1 LETA/CREDE, France)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-077-8.ch010
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The development of ubiquitous computing has brought up the emergence of a new type of space, sensitive and neither fully material nor totally virtual, within our environments. This essay discusses, from a cultural perspective, aesthetic and philosophical issues related to what has been called “mixed reality spaces”. It aims to show how early examples of interactive art can be found in Baroque architecture and, through analysis of the perceptual means used in some of those works, proposes a strategy for bringing aesthetic depth and relevance into mixed reality installations. Depicting philosophical implications between vision and touch and their consequences for aesthetics, this essay proposes that, while designing mixed reality installations, artist operate a radical shift from the vision to touch in order to create meaningful experiences and preserve freedom for the participant.
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Mixed Spaces, Real Places

Why Baroque? Much debate has been held around the term “Baroque”. Even the best authors on the subject have had doubts about the notion's weight. Alternatively, either the concept was reduced to the sole realm of Architecture, or restricted to an increasingly limited period of time. Its elusive essence kept escaping categorization until in 1988 french philosopher Gilles Deleuze provided in his book The Fold, a definition that anchors the concept not in form or style, but in transformation. Rooting Baroque in Leibniz's thinking, Deleuze extracts the concept from its historical reference, and makes it a trans-temporal feature. He shows how artists with no apparent connection (such as Caravaggio and Paul Klee, for instance) are in fact linked by a secret tie: the fold. Deleuze understands it not as a result (the folded object), but, rather, as an operative mode.

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