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Themesicon: navigation pathMapping and Texticon: navigation pathThe Carthographic View
Melencolia (Dürer)

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join with the architects, in their landscapes and virtual cities, as can be seen in the works of Miguel Chevalier LI3, who draws time and explores post-ephemeral and fragile images. In this way, the space becomes a floating space and the real becomes more and more transformed by a virtual that generalizes the concept of «-scape.» As Arjun Appadurai has shown in «Modernity at Large» [5] a far-reaching work of intercultural imagination is established in the ethnoscapes, mediascapes, ideoscapes, which are made of the virtual archives and potential narratives of all cultures, between homogenization and heterogenization. The cultures of the ruling powers who dominate with their war machines, but also those of the dominated, the diasporas and the «post-colonial» minorities. There is thus a becoming-time of space, and in this situation marked by the technological revolution, it is extremely important to distinguish two qualities that are characteristic of ephemeral time. A melancholic ephemeral, that of the black bile of the Greeks and the Vanités of the moderns (C.f. «Melencolia» by Dürer, 1514) [6] , and of an entire western mindset that


refuses to renounce its psychological investment in objects and to undertake a Freudian «task of mourning.» And an ephemeral of affirmation that is more Nietzschian, which I found more present during my stays in Japan and China. The impermanence (the «mujô» in Japanese) is the positive capture of time in its vibrations, its passages, its rhythms and all its variations that unite the technological and the cosmological. As one of humanity’s most ancient texts – the «Yi-Jing» – shows, it involves combining directions and energies, in order to grasp «the flux that is passing» («peng yun qi») and the dynamic that corresponds to the opportune moment. That is why the ephemeral is not a passive acceptance of the present, but rather a way of capturing the modulations of beings and things, their unity and their differences.

To readdress Hannah Arendt’s distinction, the «potentia» as a potentiality that creates a common space interwoven with «the plural-oneness» is radically distinct from the «potestas» as a logic of power. Since there can be a politic of the fluxes characteristic of the «potestas», there can also be an esthetic, indeed an ethic, of potency, in which virtuality is a force that

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