The Nordic Journal of Aesthetics 2023-08-24T12:08:00+02:00 Tobias Dias & Maja Bak Herrie Open Journal Systems Deals with aesthetic problems and conveys current aesthetic research Introduction: The Aesthetics of Attention 2023-08-17T08:37:09+02:00 Jacob Lund Birgitte Stougaard Pedersen Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen Maja Bak Herrie 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Jacob Lund, Birgitte Stougaard Pedersen, Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen, Maja Bak Herrie Attention Disorders Between Impairment and Ferality: Towards a Political Aesth-Ethics of Dismantlement 2023-08-17T08:49:34+02:00 Yves Citton <p>Attention in the 21st century is commonly perceived as being in insufficient supply. Increasing numbers of children and adults are<br>diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder) worldwide. This article suggests that our understanding of attentional deficits could gain from a double reframing. First, the notion of “impairment” (as recently discussed by Jonathan Sterne) seems more appropriate than the category of “disorder” to unfold the stakes of attentional problems. Second, approaching attentional issues as collective and organizational questions seems more empowering than as individual shortcomings—and the notion of “ferality” (as developed by Anna Tsing and the contributors to the <em>Feral Atlas</em>) provides an enlightening tool to account for the role played by<br>infrastructures in the production of attentional deficits. As a result, the article sketches two compasses designed to help us develop a “collapsonaut attention” more in tune with the challenges of the Anthropocene.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Yves Citton Silence! The Background of Attention as a Battleground 2023-08-17T09:16:14+02:00 Anette Vandsø <p>The commodification of silence responding to a disturbing environment is integrated in the growing attention economy. This paper suggests that the idea of silence embedded in these products preclude fruitful understandings of—and interventions in—the<br />problematics they address, and it proposes Cage’s <em>silence</em> as a more efficacious model for understanding our problems with a disturbing environment, and a better practice for intervening in it. Informed by Yves Citton’s ecology of attention the paper argues that Cage’s silence centers the interplay of attention, subjectivity and intentionality, as it takes play between us and the background, which to some extent produces us. And finally, it suggests that the Cagean practice of paying attention to this background is what Citton calls a “micropolitics of attention”, because it reveals the background as a battleground.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Anette Vandsø Nothing to See? Paying Attention in the Dark Environment 2023-08-17T09:28:32+02:00 Matti Tainio <p>A cloudy November evening deep in an old forest. It is really dark, and I try to observe my environment. I discern the difference between the treetops and the dark sky and the snow-covered ground. Everything else is formless. My vision is quite useless, and the other senses are weak in these circumstances. Only the background hum is audible and most aromas are erased by the freezing temperature. In a winter outfit, all I can feel is the moving air on my face. Yet, this is not sensory deprivation, there are things to observe. What is it possible to discern when the visual stimulus is minimized? This article focuses on the aesthetic experience of darkness by analyzing a visit to a deep natural darkness and attempts to connect this distinct case to aesthetic theory. The emphasis is on the descriptive analysis of the challenges of seeing in the darkness.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Matti Tainio Stay with Me: Uncertain Indices and Attentional Presence in Chat Interfaces 2023-08-24T12:02:47+02:00 Maja Bak Herrie Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen <p>In this article, Herrie and Sørensen examine the mediation of typing indicators (“…”) in online messaging. Their point of departure is a scene from the contemporary novel <em>Exciting Times</em> by Naoise Dolan (2020), in which the ‘dots’ play a prominent role. Their analysis shows how typing indicators, as interface design, mediate the complex communication situation in which they take part: from being mere signals, they have slipped into our emotional lives. From a semiotic perspective (Charles S. Peirce), the authors define typing indicators as <em>uncertain indices</em> which through unknowability and suspense establish an attentional presence. In continuation hereof, the authors argue that the acts of writing and waiting in contemporary attentional ecologies (Yves Citton) through the mediation of typing indicators as indicators of attentional presence, could be considered a mode of caring (Bernard Stiegler).</p> 2023-08-24T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Maja Bak Herrie, Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen Keeping the War Outside the Frame: Ellipsis as a Means of Redirection Toward Women's Perspectives in Two War Narratives 2023-08-17T09:39:23+02:00 Bernardita M. Cubillos <p>This article explores how cinema’s material discontinuity can stimulate the attention of a distracted audience and prompt reflection<br />on historical violence. By examining Yasujiro Ozu’s <em>Sanma no aji</em> (1962) and Greta Gerwig’s <em>Little Women</em> (2019), it argues that ellipsis is a powerful technique used to construct an argument about the relationship between war and women’s social roles. Specifically, the article analyses how these films use the ellipsis to enhance the resistance of women who act against the official thread of History. Finally, the findings highlight the potential of cinema to challenge dominant narratives and encourage alternative approaches to representing violence and social roles.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Bernardita M. Cubillos Infrastructural Poetics in Yahya Hassan and Shadi Angelina Bazeghi 2023-08-17T09:48:27+02:00 Solveig Daugaard <p>This article discusses the relationship between infrastructure and attention through the lens of contemporary Danish poetry. It applies Susan Leigh Star’s concept of “infrastructural inversion” on the poetic practices of two Danish poets with immigrant background, Yahya Hassan and Shadi Angelina Bazeghi, by focusing on the infrastructural conditions for the production, circulation and reception of their poetry via literary institutions and liberal news media in Denmark in recent years.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Solveig Daugaard Artists and the Public's Attention Since the 1960s: An Exploration of How Artists Seek to Capture the Audience's Attention 2023-08-17T10:04:28+02:00 Patrick van Rossem <p>Art historical research shows that artists, especially since the 1960s rise in museum and art gallery attendance do not always trust the audience’s ability to deal with their art. The choice for a performative aesthetic, for example, has also been a method for reasserting rather than—as is often thought—relinquishing artistic control. The article looks at aesthetic strategies developed by artists who desire(d) a more attentive look from their audiences. It considers works made by artists in the sixties and seventies. It is a fact that the appearance of mass audiences goes hand in hand with the creation of artworks that have “attention” as their subject. Secondly, the article takes a look at more contemporary work. Faced with spectators that spend about 28 seconds looking at artworks and reading the accompanying labels, artists are developing strategies that slow spectators down, thus hoping to channel and hold their attention.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Patrick van Rossem #Filterdrop: Attending to Photographic Alterations 2023-08-17T10:19:43+02:00 Claire Anscomb <p>It is well-documented that the alteration of portrait photographs can have a negative impact on a viewer’s self-esteem. One might think that providing written disclaimers warning of alteration might help to mitigate this effect, yet empirical studies have shown that viewers continue to feel like what they are seeing is real, and thus attainable, despite knowing it is not. I propose that this cognitive dissonance occurs because disclaimers fail to show viewers how to look at the contents of a photographic image differently. Consequently, viewers have the same perceptual experience, where the picture appears to faithfully resemble a direct visual experience of the subject, which conflicts with their changing sense of warrant. However, I argue that the degree of perceived similarity, and so contact, may be subject to change depending on what a viewer is attentive to during their viewing of an image, including subtle but unrealistic signs of alteration.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Claire Anscomb Your Tongue Here (Or Not): On Imagining Whether To Take a Bite (Or Not) 2023-08-24T12:08:00+02:00 Sue Spaid <p>Inspired by recent visits to the Disgusting Food Museum (DFM) in Mälmo, SE and “FOOD: Bigger than Your Plate” (2019) at the Victoria &amp; Albert in London, UK, this article explores the saliency of “disgust” given its role in the “attention economy,” hipster allure and emotional encoding. Initially appalled by the DFM’s demonizing national delicacies as disgusting, the author soon realised that doing so has a “silver lining” in terms of attention. One aspect that remains under-explored is the connection between imagination and attention. The relationship between taste and disgust grants us a vehicle for working this out, since human beings are wired for disgust, yet what disgusts is learnt. Unlike basic emotions for which we have salience and/or memories, we deploy our imagination to anticipate disgust. To defeat disgust’s alarmist ploys, “food adventurers” must block their imagination. “Disgusting food” not only grabs people’s attention, but it tends to deceive.</p> 2023-08-24T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Sue Spaid Multiple Identities of Borderline Cases in Art 2023-08-17T10:29:45+02:00 Jean Lin <p>When the borderline cases of art occur in non-art categories, the debate of artistic status arises not only with regard to the individual cases but also with regard to the category to which they belong. The identity of the individual case tends to be defined in connection to the category it belongs to. It tends to formulate that, if the individual case is art, then the entire category is also art, and if the category is not art, then the individual case is also not art. Such a view inevitably hampers the artistic status of works arising from the non-art categories. This article argues that the individual cases and their belonging categories need not be strictly interlocking and that they could possess multiple identities depending on the context that they are present. Thus the point shifts from whether the case is or is not art in its absolute sense to ‘when’ is it art.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Jean Lin Attention and Aesthetic Value 2023-08-17T10:35:28+02:00 Morten Kyndrup <p>We are capable of engaging in different kinds of relations with objects and situations we meet. Any relation is, in principle singular and thus <em>einmalig</em>, unique. Still, certain general types of relationality do exist. Relations may be established with focus (“attention”) on usability, truth, ethics, power, authenticity—and of course, on “beauty,” on aesthetic value. This differentiation is an invention of the Modern world and in itself subject to historical change. In terms of “discursive areas” it has been theorized in varying keys—including quite many universalist ones. We are free to choose our modes of attention. Still, institutionalized discourses in practice pre-configure these modes. Especially when it comes to art and Modernity’s “great divide” between <em>poiesis</em> and <em>aesthesis</em>, the conditions for attentional approaches appear largely pre-figured. The article discusses this pre-configuration and the institutionalized “freedoms” of art and its audience, respectively—including current calls to abolish such differentiations and to transgress the discursive boundaries of art.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Morten Kyndrup Attention, Affect, and Aesthetic Experience 2023-08-17T10:42:05+02:00 Henrik Kaare Nielsen <p>The article suggests a conceptualization of the interrelationship between attention, affect, and aesthetic experience. It supplements classical aesthetic theory by integrating knowledge from neurophysiology, developmental psychology, and psychoanalysis. Furthermore, the article proposes a distinction between a variety of types of affect that are discussed with a view to their potential contribution to elaborating the concept of aesthetic experience in the Kantian tradition and to reflecting different qualities of attention.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Henrik Kaare Nielsen On the Performativity of Disinterested Attention for the Experience of Contemporary Art 2023-08-17T10:52:06+02:00 Francesca Natale <p>The aim of this article is to point out that attentional practices don’t simply overlap with control and action/reaction dynamics; they are also strictly connected to non-productivity, non-instrumentality, disinterestedness, contemplation as performative inactivity. Disinterested attention (a definition formulated by Bence Nanay) and free-floating attention help to better understand the apparently seamless and unproblematic transition from passive spectator to active participant/agent of contemporary art. If considering attention in relation to executive functions (planning and organizing our experience in the world we live in) could be persuasive, a self-evident definition of attention strictly considered as “selection for action” is less convincing, and the weakness of this connection becomes clear when goal-oriented attitude is pushed into the background. Attention is often researched into to improve our performances and to overcome the inevitable “blind spots”: experiencing art is about a different way of paying attention, that is fluctuating, “suspended,” fragmented.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Francesca Natale Kant's "Aesthetic Idea": Towards an Aesthetics of Non-Attention 2023-08-17T11:00:05+02:00 Frederik Tygstrup <p>In <em>Critique of Judgment</em>, Kant introduces a foundational theme in modern aesthetics by identifying the judgment of taste as a particular mode of attention. In distinction to the mode of attention in mundane experience that works by determining how an intuition can be subsumed under a concept, aesthetic attention celebrates the pleasure associated with the “unison in the play of the powers of the mind” confronted with “the manifold in a thing.” Aesthetic attention, in other words, is an aesthetic subject’s attention to itself and to the pleasures derived from flexing the power of imagination. In this respect, Kant’s aesthetics reaffirms its cartesian core, the primordial positing of the thinking and reflective I as the necessary preposition for experience. This strict distribution of attention toward the secure epistemological architecture of object and subject seems to vacillate, however, in Kant’s brief discussion of artworks as purveyors of “aesthetic ideas.” This article discusses the de-limitation of attention instigated by the aesthetic idea. The aesthetic idea is associated with the artwork as an object, but it immediately transgresses the limits of the object through an array of analogical instantiations of “spirit.” On the other hand, aesthetic ideas are subjectively appreciated, but this appreciation similarly transgresses subjective cognition in an inexhaustible ramification of associative thinking. Developing these characteristics of the “aesthetic idea,” the article proposes to excavate from <em>Critique of Judgment</em> a mode of aesthetic sensibility that eventually challenges the Cartesian architecture of subject and object and thus reposits aesthetics in a field of relational interdependency.</p> 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Frederik Tygstrup Critique of the Power of Prophecy 2023-08-17T11:04:36+02:00 Anna Enström 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Anna Enström Note on Contributors 2023-08-17T15:00:03+02:00 Jacob Lund Birgitte Stougaard Pedersen Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen Maja Bak Herrie 2023-08-17T00:00:00+02:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Jacob Lund, Birgitte Stougaard Pedersen, Mette-Marie Zacher Søresen, Maja Bak Herrie