Digital Tarkovsky, Metahaven

Digital Tarkovsky

117 printed pages
In the US, an adult on average spends two hours and 51 minutes on their smartphone every day. That is eight minutes longer than Andrei Tarkovsky’s film Stalker. We’re not interested in telling you put your phone down and start paying attention to the real world. Instead, we want to investigate the kind of experience we have whilst staring at these tiny screens and the digital platforms that inhabit them. We are interested in calling this something other than smartphone addiction. We are interested in calling it cinema. Digital Tarkovsky is an extended poetic exploration of how our experiences of visual entertainment and time itself are changing in the era of the smartphone and near-constant connection. The essay applies the ‘slow’ cinematic art of Andrei Tarkovsky to our interaction with the digital, visual reality of screens and interfaces. Digital Tarkovsky is a way of tracing what cinema, storytelling and time mean in our platform-based world. The work of Metahaven consists of filmmaking, writing, design, and installations, and is united conceptually by interests in poetry, storytelling, digital superstructures, and propaganda. Films by Metahaven include The Sprawl (Propaganda about Propaganda) (2015), Information Skies (2016), Possessed (2018, with Rob Schröder), Hometown (2018) and Eurasia (Questions on Happiness) (2018). Publications include PSYOP (2018), Black Transparency (2015) and Uncorporate Identity (2010). Their work is screened, published, and exhibited worldwide.
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“If it were possible to demonstrate that lived reality is always a construct of the imagination and thus perceived only on condition of being fictional, irreducibly haunted by phantasms, then we would finally be forced to conclude that perception is subordinated to — is in a transductive relationship with — the imagination; that is, there would be no perception outside imagination, and vice versa, perception then being the imagination’s projection screen. The relationship between the two would be constituted of previously non-existent terms, and this in turn would mean that life is always cinema [...].”

"Якщо б можна було продемонструвати, що жива реальність завжди є конструкцією уяви і, таким чином, сприймається лише за умов вигадки, непримиренно переслідується фантазмами, то ми, нарешті, будемо змушені зробити висновок, що сприйняття підпорядковане - знаходиться в трансдуктівному відносини з - уява; тобто, не існує сприйняття поза фантазією, і навпаки, сприйняття, що є проекційним екраном уяви. Відносини між цими двома будуть складатися з раніше відсутніх термінів, і це, в свою чергу, означатиме, що життя завжди є кінематографом [...] ".

Tarkovsky forces us to experience the fact that things take time.
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