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Books - Libros
  • Lectura simultánea - Simultaneous reading.

    Lectura simultánea - Simultaneous reading.

    "Después de la fotografía" por Fred Ritchin

    "Sapiens. Una breve historia de la humanidad" por Yuval Noah Harari

    Sendos libros son sin duda recomendables, estoy a mitad de ambos y realmente es una experiencia singular. Considero que la lectura simultánea de ambos enriquece la lectura de los mismos enormemente.

    El primero trata sobre las transformaciones que la fotografía como campo profesional a la vez que la utilidad social que ha ido adquiriendo, en un entorno tan cambiante como el contemporáneo, una era en la que la comunicación visual se ha revolucionado, democratizado y de igual forma ha evolucionado tecnológicamente. Las consecuencias de estos grandes cambios han repercutido directamente tanto en la profesión, como en la manera de percibir y expresar la experiencia vital.

    El Segundo, es la obra de un doctor en historia, que relata de forma asombrosamente resumida la historia de la humanidad, haciendo énfasis en los grandes cambios que posibilitan una evolución transcendente en las sociedades humanas.

    Su fantástico curso online, tanto en "Coursera" como en YouTube, son gratuitos y libres de acceso, (https://m.youtube.com/channel/..) y es sin duda todo un regalo generoso que inspira e incita al estudio e investigación de la historia humana y al mismo tiempo, relata la historia desde una perspectiva muy particular, que sin duda, o al menos desde mi punto de vista, hace recorrer todos los conocimientos aprendidos  y reflexionar en torno al conocimiento adquirido y su relación con otros muchos aspectos y perspectivas.

    Su especial enfoque sobre el mito en las sociedades, ciertamente ha aportado unos conocimientos que se empezaban a esbozar tímidamente en mi trabajo artístico sobre la mitología y su conexión con la cultura y que sin duda, este libro ha supuesto una clarificación y un fortalecimiento de mis propias hipótesis y  ha impulsado el desarrollo de algunas otras que darán paso a nuevos proyectos.

    La lectura paralela es, a mi parecer, fascinante, parece como un curso académico intensivo, en el que la fotografía y su indudable conexión social e histórica toman un sentido propio a la vez que muy coherente, que vislumbra verdades notorias desde una distancia prudente y profesional y de igual forma muestra un conocimiento amplio, cuidadosamente elaborado, y tremendamente interesante.

    Recomiendo sin duda alguna ambos libros.

    El primero no lo he podido encontrar en español, ni en formato electrónico, pero quizás haya alguna posibilidad de encontrarlo en otros idiomas y espero que más adelante se edite en español.

    El segundo, hay versión en varios formatos y lenguas: español, inglés, papel, formato electrónico e incluso en audiolibros, estos últimos suelen ser una versión oral aún más abreviada que el libro pero pueden ayudar a obrener una idea somera de los conceptos principales. Ya he adquirido este último formato, a la vez que el electrónico, ya que, en mi experiencia, el escuchar audiolibros puede agilizar la lectura.

    A mí personalmente, me gusta escuchar audiolibros cuando trabajo largas horas editando fotografías, y en mi experiencia, pienso que si el libro es interesante, la lectura es más rápida y los conocimientos son internalizados con más facilidad.



    "After Photography"by Fred Ritchin

    "Sapiens, A Brief History of Humankind" by Yuval Noah Harari

    Both books are definitely recommenable, I'm halfway through both and it really is a particular experience. I believe that the simultaneous reading of these two books enriches the reading of both enormously.

    The first deals with the transformations in the realm of photography, in the professional field, as well as the social utility that have been acquiring in last decades, concretely in the changing panorama of contemporary era, an historic moment in which visual communication has been revolutionized, democratized at the same time has evolved progressively in high-technologial aspects. The consequences of these great changes have directly affected both a profession and the way we perceive and express our life experience.

    The second one, is a book written by a doctor in History, who narrates in a surprisingly summarized way, an history of humanity, emphasizing the great changes that make possible an evolution transcending human societies.

    His fantastic online course, both on "Coursera" and YouTube respectively, are totally free (https://m.youtube.com/channel..) it's undoubtedly a generous gift, that inspires and incites the study and further research on human history, as well as telling the story from a very particular and clarifying perspective, which undoubtedly, or at least in my opinion, makes us go through all the knowledge acquired and highlighting the relation with the individual and collective beliefs, it invites to consider the whole thing, in a refexive way and question the things that we thought we knew.

    His special focus on myth in societies has certainly brought some knowledge that I was beginning to sketch timidly in my artistic work on mythology and its connection with culture. I can affirm that without a doubt, this book has meant clarification of some of my reflections and sometimes an affirmation of my own hypotheses as well as encourage the development of some others that I'm working on in new projects.

    Parallel reading is, in my opinion, fascinating, seems like an intensive academic course, in which photography and its undoubted social and historical connection take a very coherent sense related to a bigger panorama, it glimpses notorious truths from a professional distance as well as a comprehensive knowledge, carefully crafted, tremendously interesting.

    I definitely recommend both books.

    The first one I could not find it in Spanish nor in electronic format, but perhaps there is some possibility of finding it in other languages ​​and I hope will be published in Spanish later on.

    The second is a version in several formats and languages: Spanish, English, paper, electronic format and even in audio books, the latter formats, are usually an oral version even shorter than the book but may help to come up with a brief idea of ​​the main concepts.

    I have already acquired this last format, together with the electronic one. In my experience, listening to audiobooks can speed reading.

    I like to listen to audiobooks when working during long hours editing photos, and I've experienced that if the book is interesting, reading is faster and the knowledge is internalized more easily.

  • "Nunca tuve, tampoco ahora, la percepción del sentimiento de mi identidad personal. yo mismo aparezco como el lugar por cuyo intermedio suceden cosas, pero el "yo" (je) no existe, no existe el "yo" (moi). Cada uno de nosotros es una especie de encrucijada que son puramente pasivas: algo sucede en ese lugar. Otras cosas igualmente válidas suceden en otros puntos. No existe opción: es una cuestión de probabilidades. De ninguna manera pretendo estar facultado para concluir que por hecho de que yo piense de este modo toda la humanidad también lo haga, pese a lo cual creo, que para cada investigador y cada escritor, el modo peculiar en que él o ella piensa y escribe abre una nueva perspectiva sobre la humanidad. Es por ello por lo que mi personal punto de vista tal vez me habilite para apuntar alguna afirmación válida en la medida en que la manera de pensar de mis colegas también abre diferentes perspectivas, todas ellas igualmente válidas.

    Claude Lévi-Strauss "Mito y Significado "
  • I never had, and still do not have, the perception of feeling my personal identity. I appear to myself as the place where something is going on, but there is no ‘I’, no ‘me.’ Each of us is a kind of crossroads where things happen. The crossroads is purely passive; something happens there. A different thing, equally valid, happens elsewhere. There is no choice, it is just a matter of chance. I don’t pretend at all that, because I think that way, I am entitled to conclude that mankind thinks that way too. But I believe that, for each scholar and each writer, the particular way he or she thinks and writes opens a new outlook on mankind. And the fact that I personally have this idiosyncracy perhaps entitles me to point to something which is valid, while the way in which my colleagues think opens different outlooks, all of which are equally valid.

    Claude Lévi-Strauss "Myth and meaning"
  • 'Las fotografías son consideradas fuentes de información muy importantes, pero no hay ningún requisito de alfabetización, ya sea de quienes las ven o de aquellas que controlan su uso. Los anunciantes, que ponen a la mujer guapa al lado del coche que están tratando de vender, utilizan una lógica implícita que, siendo no verbal, no se cuestiona. Tal vez eso sea parcialmente porque la alfabetización fotográfica no es alentada - el analfabetismo funciona tan bien para la publicidad. Si uno supiera leer las imágenes, los llamados mensajes subliminales de la publicidad serían mucho más obvios: "Compre este coche y la mujer guapa le gustará" es considerablemente menos convincente cuando se le dice sin rodeos.'

    Fred Ritchin - A nuestra propia imagen
  • ‘Photographs are considered highly important sources of information but there is no requirement of literacy, from either those who view them or those that control their use. Advertisers, who put the pretty woman next to the car they are trying to sell, utilize an implied logic that, being nonverbal, is left unchallenged. Perhaps that is partially why photographic literacy is not encouraged - illiteracy works so well for advertising. If one knew how to read the images, the so called subliminal messages of advertising would be much more obvious: “Buy this car and the pretty woman will like you” is considerably less convincing when put bluntly.’

    Fred Ritchin - In Our Own Image
  • Valores estéticos - Aesthetic values

    Valores estéticos - Aesthetic values

    "Creo que la enseñanza de la estética es la más alta de todas las enseñanzas, porque trata de la vida en su máxima complejidad. Pero si deja de ser puramente estética, si se detiene en cualquier lugar entre la imagen y el diagrama, se convierte en la más ofensiva de todas las enseñanzas."

    Carta de George Eliot (Mary Anne Evans) a su amigo Frederic Harrison, (1866).

    "I believe that the teaching of aesthetics is the highest of all teachings, because it deals with life in its greatest complexity. But if it stops being purely aesthetic, if it stops anywhere between the image and the diagram, it becomes the most offensive of all the teachings."

    Letter from George Eliot (Mary Anne Evans) to his friend Frederic Harrison, (1866).

  • Book suggestions, recommendations.

    Book suggestions, recommendations.

    Although I'm currently reading "Ways of seeing " by the recently deceased John Berger, book that by the way, I think is a must for all visual communicators, I do have to recommend the book that introduced me the author and his work, that is "Basic Critical Theory for Photographers" by Ashley la Grange, where you can find some of the most important essays in a very synthetic and explanatory way.

    The essays presented in the book are: The above mentioned "Ways of seeing" by John Berger, Susan Sontag "On photography" (of course), John Szarkowski, "The Photographer’s Eye and Stephen Shore, The Nature of Photographs", Roland Barthes, "Camera Lucida", Martha Rosler, "In, Around and Afterthoughts (On Documentary Photography)", Abigail Solomon-Godeau, "Inside/Out", Clive Scott, "The Spoken Image: Photography and Language".

    It give you a taste of some of the most influential readings in the photographic realm, and definitely encourage you to get the book of each author. I can recommend these books as well as the next one that I just started to read. It's philosophy related, as I'm more and more interested in the aesthetics in different cultural traditions, and the fluctuation of ideas in history for different authors, although Kant is the most appealing to me, at the moment, given than Lacan's theories, diffused in his writings, seminaries, and lectures are influenced by his theories on aesthetics.

    This book "Aesthetics and subjectivity: from Kant to Nietzsche" by Andrew Bowie, seems to make a good structured journey on the changes in time on the aesthetics conceptions.

    I am in the beginning so, I can't talk in deep about it, but it looks promising and very appealing to me, and I'm looking forward to read it.

    I hope this suggestions could be useful for you, somehow.