Andrea Pinotti is Professor of Aesthetics and Representation and Image Theories at the Università Statale di Milano. He has been fellow at the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America at Columbia University, New York, the EHESS and FMSH in Paris, the Warburg Institute in London, the ZfL in Berlin. He has been visiting professor at the Université Jean-Moulin Lyon 3 and Directeur de Programme at the Collège International de Philosophie in Paris for the period 2010-2016. Among his publications: Estetica della pittura (2007); Cultura visuale. Immagini sguardi media dispositivi (co-authored with A. Somaini, 2016); L’empathie. Histoire d’une idée de Platon au posthumain (2016).
Aesthetics of visual arts; image theories; visual culture studies; memory studies with particular reference to monumentality and counter-monumentality; empathy theories; Goethe’s morphology and its contemporary heredity.
Hyper-Image. Simulation, Immersion, and the Challenge of Hyper-Realistic Environments
Since the first attempts made in the Forties by Sergei Eisenstein in order to realize a stereoscopic cinema (Stereokino), a huge amount of intellectual, technological and financial efforts has been spent to implement an experience of the artificial man-made image so that it becomes impossible for the beholder to distinguish it from actual reality: a “hyper-image”, which revokes its status of “image-of”, presenting immediately itself as the object it represents. Various domains are affected by this powerful trend:
- the filmic experience – both in traditional theatres and in home-theatres – is transformed by 3D cinema and 4D cinema;
- the videogame experience is intensified by immersive virtual environments;
- the artistic experience is enriched by interactive installations;
- the professional experience is deeply remodelled according to the new imaging technologies;
- the daily life experience is imbued with easily accessible and user-friendly applications hybridizing the physiological vision with AR (Augmented Reality) views.
In a near future, the widespread diffusion of virtual reality headsets (like the recently released Oculus Rift) will radicalize the paradox of an extremely mediated experience promoting a belief of immediate presence. As a major consequence of this paradox, the threshold between image and reality is substantially abolished: what was formerly an exceptional violation of the borders (elements of the picture stepping out of the frame or of the screen, or vice versa elements of reality entering the image), becomes now the rule and is no longer perceived as a threshold-trespass.
The research project addresses this complex constellation of problematic issues, aiming at developing a transdisciplinary approach in order to gain a critical comprehension of this phenomenon.