Wanting to dive deeper into the role of networked cinema, I began investigating into the role of the screen. As my project is essentially all online and reflected through a screen, developing my interest in how the screen functions was a concept I naturally fell upon. Looking at the semiotics of television and media, Algis Mickunas proposed that through various levels of rhetoric, economic context and controlling interests, screens could be thoroughly analysed. Discussing fundamentals, Mickunas contributes some interesting points on the substance of composition and how the screen is ontological. Using television as a case study, Mickunas noted that by explicating the presumed nature of media, all the way to its very substance, the latter can only be intimated. But what does that even mean?
In ‘Film As A Modern Medium And Ontology’, I pulled some key quotes to understand, including:
- ‘Television camera took over the function to roam the world and to see the world for the individual; hence the screen is a window to the world, world in your home.’ (pp. 45)
- ‘The screen was not regarded as a boundary that had to be overcome, and the social construction of reality can now occur without one’s sensory participation (Berger, Luckmann 1969).’ (pp. 45)
- ‘There were other media that marked the boundaries between social construction of reality and aesthetic domain, e.g theatre.’ (pp. 45)
- ‘The screen does not present itself as a boundary between various socially constituted realities, but merely as a surface in this reality.’ (pp. 45)
- ‘Just like the eye, the television [screen] is no longer visible.’ (pp. 45)
- ‘Speaking ontologically, this disappearance is enhanced by the disposition to discard the unity of physical place and body in favor of the social presence of disembodied communication.’ (pp. 46)
- ‘As Joshua Meyrowitz suggests, there is a change not only in social activities, but also perception of social reality. If the boundaries among types of programs begin to dissolve, then situations begin to blend.’ (pp. 46)
It stood out immediately what I had been asking myself; if ‘the screen does not present itself as a boundary between various socially constituted realities, but merely as a surface in this reality’, then how will my framing hold these realities and frame their surface?