Aristotle’s Aperture: An Animated History of Photography, from the Camera Obscura to the Camera Phone
…and how a greedy attitude to intellectual property made the camera’s primary competitor perish.
By Maria Popova
“Needing to have reality confirmed and experience enhanced by photographs is an aesthetic consumerism to which everyone is now addicted,” Susan Sontag wrote in her timeless and increasingly timely treatise on photography a century and a half after the invention of this worldview-changing technology, making a resounding case for what photography can do that the other arts can’t. But how did this relatively nascent art, succeeding cave paintings by millennia, become the dominant visual narrative form of our time?
In this short film, the Cooperative of Photography takes us on a five-minute animated gallop through some of the 100 ideas that changed photography, tracing the co-evolution of technology, art, and culture:
Complement with Italo Calvino on photography and the art of presence, Steven Johnson’s 600-year history of the selfie, Rebecca Solnit on how Muybridge’s pioneering chronophotography changed our consciousness, and Sontag on how photography mediates our relationship with life and death.
HT Open Culture
Published August 25, 2016