We're all quite literally looking at pictures all day long. Of
course, some of us are more involved than others with this world of pictures. ... not every image just goes past us. Sometimes, the picture makes us stop, the photograph arrests us, the drawing makes us forget what we were just doing. We've all had this struck-by-lightning moment with an image.
Roland Barthes calls this arresting potential in imagery the Punctum.
It's the sensation that floods over us, stops us in our tracks and, if only for a second, blots out everything else. We feel something new and indescribable, suddenly alone with the image. Punctum is not the sudden understanding of what the image 'means'. It's our sudden availability, for whatever reason, for the image to create a new meaning in us, just for us. A one-time flash of something we hadn't felt or understood before. For that moment of interaction we are free and flying and somewhere altogether new.
As visual people, we crave this experience. As artists, we long to create it.
And today, we have a worldwide movement for our shared love of that struck-by-lightning moment. Join us in creating and celebrating this worldwide day honoring imagery and visual creativity. ... for creative people everywhere,
Punctum is who we are and what we do.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
I learned about Punctum Day via istockphoto.com. Here is their explanation...