Thursday, 8 November 2012

Lecture 4: Cities and film

The city in Modernism
The possibility of an urban sociology
The city of public and private space
The city in Postmodernism
The relation of the individual to the crowd in the city

Georg simmel, 

German sociologist 

Influences critical theory of the Frankfurt School thinkers eg: Walter Benjamin, Kracauer, Adorno and Horkheimer

Dresden exhibition

Simmel is asked to lecture on the role of intellectual life in the city but instead reverses the idea and writes about the effect of the city on the individual
Herbert Bayer Lonely Metropolitan 1932

Surrealist influence in the collage, fragmented subject.
Double referencing int he imagery.

Urban sociology, Lewis Hine (1932)

The resistance of the individual to being levelled, swallowed up in the social-technological mechanism.
Georg Simmel - The Metropolis and Mental Life 1903

Picturing a vulnerable body, the theme within is images is the relationship between the bodies and the cities.
The individual being swallowed up by the cities, an experience in photography.

Architect, Louis Sullivan

' Form ever follows function ' Always.
He applies the ideas of form follows function to his work.
Creator of modern sky scraper, an influential architect.

Carson Pirire Scott Store in Chicago (1904)

A representation of upwardly mobile city, an attraction to the city, business opportunity.
Fire cleared building in Chicago in 171 and made way for Louis Sullivan new aspirational.

Charles Sheeler

Artist/ photographer
worked for the ford company, commissioned to photograph the modernist industrial steel plants.
Form and range was juxtaposed.

Fordism: Mechanised labour relations

The movements the machine and the workers make is very repetitive,  cycle of production and consumption.
A reproduction method.

Modern Times (1936) Charlie Chaplin

Chaos in the scene, makes a comment on the aspect of modernity.
A critical point of view, the idea of being swallowed by the machine shows a political and real method in the film being compared to the machine workers.

Stock market crash of 1929

Factories close and unemployment goes up dramatically.
Leads to 'the great depression'
Margaret Bourke White


Appears in art and literature.
Upper class gentleman, 'stroller, lounger, loafter'
Idolness is put forward with creativeness.

Charles Baudellaire

Men sit back and observe the social interaction in the images.

Walter Benjamin

Applies the ideas to his own life, a memoir, personal, experience of it.
The experience of strolling through arcades when he was child, trying to re create the past.
Thinks about how the city is used and arranged by people.
Outside and inside at the same time, consumerism is there.

Photographer as a flaneur

Susan Sontag on photography
She picturing the photographers separate from the crowd. Looking for moments to identify.
Architectural moments or ideal moments. Street photography.

The term flâneur comes from the French masculine noun flâneur—which has the basic meanings of "stroller", "lounger", "saunterer", "loafer"—which itself comes from the French verb flâner, which means "to stroll"

Walter Benjamin
The term flâneur comes from the French masculine noun flâneur—which has the basic meanings of "stroller", "lounger", "saunterer", "loafer"—which itself comes from the French verb flâner, which means "to stroll"

Susan Buck Morss

Reflects on walter.b

Susan Buck-Morss, in this text suggests that the only figure a woman on the street can be is either a prostitute or a bag lady.

Cindy Sherman Untitled Film Stills (1977-80) 

9/11 Citizen journalism: the end of the flaneur?

Adam Bezer 2001

Liz Wells says that phrase is first seen in an article by Stuart Allen Online News: Journalism and the Internet in 2006. She discusses the 7/7 bombings in London and the immediacy of the mobile phone images which recorded the event as commuters travel to work. These images were online within an hour of the event.

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