I should have mentioned these a little earlier but with all the problems I lost track of the notes. However here i am recording – in a more complete way, the lectures we live through.
The first and second are on Narrative;
“Story telling starts with human history itself, there is not, nor has there ever been, anywhere, a group of people without stories. International, transhistorical, across all cultures storytelling is just there – a part of life” – Barthes. It was first explained that story telling is everywhere, not just in little fairytale books with beautifully detailed illustrations, but it is part of everyday life, we tell stories ion, we tell people about our day, about past experiences, about what we want to do in the future; they are all stories, some more elequant than others.
The importance of this to art was summed up by a quote from Miche Bal, “That works of art create narrative between the viewer and the work… and the agency of the work is the ability is has to create meaning through its visuality thus affecting the narrativity of our engagement with the work.”
Then the different types of narratives were explained separately; Continuous: usually a single image with one complete story told in one place, Monosenic: a single scene in any form, Documentary: using a ‘camera view’ to tell a story, Simultaneous narrative: abstract designs that use pattern and symbols rather than words, Synoptic: a single character appears multiple times in a single scene, Panoptic: multiple scenes and actions without repetition of characters, Progressive: depicting a single scene, but with multiple actions, Sequential: each scene or action is represented with a particular frame, Linear: starts at the beginning, with a middle, and comes to the end and stops, Non-linear elements of disruption in linear, it is looped or circular and is not logically in the right order, and Rhizomatic- that there is a beginning and it flares out into every ending.
The second lecture on the narrative explained in more detail that “storytelling and narration have played a significant role in contemporary art for quite some time, materializing as a thread that has developed alongside the decreasing popularity of documentary practices in art.” – Selene Wendt.
The lecture was an attempt to separate the two – written narrative and the pictorial narrative; “The profound difference between illustration and narrative artwork is not always obvious to the casual observer. An illustration is a self-contained entity. It stands alone on its own merits” –Calista Bell.
There was also a dig into the effects of technology on art, as technology has always effect art and hence the types of narrative has changed; reproducible print, moving pictures, television narratives, internet and the ability to tell more than one at a time has made the act of storytelling evolve through the eras.
Recomended books; Roland Barthes, ‘Image – mucis- text’, Mieche Bal, ‘Narratology’, Mark Sata, ‘composition no.1’, Walter Benjamin, ‘the work of art’, Alessandro Indovico, ‘Post-digital print: the mutation of publishing since 1894’.