PANORAMAS OF THE 21ST. CENTURY TAKEN WITH A CAMERA OF THE 19TH. CENTURY by Eric Jervaise
Without any doubt, the panoramic photography has experienced a renaissance in recent years. It can be argued that this is just fashion, or the interest to try antique techniques, but the evi- dences go beyond these: a reflection about perception, a zone that is difficult to determine, when we join the physiological and the cultural explanations of the vision. Goethe already said it –in a Romantic conception that privileged subjectivity– to perceive and to think are coincident activities. The Renaissance perspective, in its diverse variants, instituted an order in the way to look and in the way to represent things, when it established the vanishing points that organized the space hierarchically. The panoramic photography opens the view beyond the limits of the physical capacity to perceive and, overall, beyond the capacity to fix the reality that we observe. The visual attention is selective with regard to the impos- sibility to respond in a contemporary way to every external stimuli, especially with the accumulation of separated images to which we are exposed constantly.The relationship between space and time is also implicit in the panoramic photography as a result of the visual route that it generates, almost a cinematographic sequence, and because of the evident cutting of reality. Precisely our view, and the memories we create with it, is made from pieces of reality. In his Notes to Koudelka’s work, Robert Delpire comments that the panoramic photography is “a piece of time, closed into itself.”
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