Cosa resta dell’acqua? Tra narcisi e dispositivi di visione

Chiara Cappelletto


This article discusses water both as a natural substance and as a medium of visualization. It describes how this liquid matter is increasingly thought of as a cultural artifact, and proposes an analogy between our experience of it as surface and mass, and its quality as mirror and environment. By examining the myth of Narcissus and its many variants, and recalling the reasons why the idea of a natural image is untenable, this analysis suggests that onlookers are «media amphibians», capable of recognizing faces in reflected images and immersing themselves in other bodies and spaces.

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