Immersion in the Visual Arts and Media


Volume Editors: Fabienne Liptay and Burcu Dogramaci
Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this volume brings together contributions by distinguished experts from different disciplinary fields for a multidimensional view on immersion in the visual arts and media. In the current media debate, immersion has frequently been linked to the advent of digital technology and its capacity to provide vivid sensations of being placed in or surrounded by an artificial space. The idea of ‘liquidity’ contained in this promise to plunge into another world informs wide areas of contemporary cultural imagination, referring to a myriad of phenomena that relate to experiences of uncertainty and instability, of complexity and change. Considering the fact, however, that the idea of ‘liquid’ spaces appeared long before the digital creation of augmented or virtual environments, the contributors to this volume trace its reemerging throughout the history of the visual arts and media. By focusing on selected works of painting and architecture, photography and cinema, video installation and media art, they explore the variability of immersive experiences according to the different media environments and interfaces that constitute the actual sites of historically shifting relations between media and users.

Contributors are: Matthias Bauer, Jörg von Brincken, Robin Curtis, Burcu Dogramaci, Thomas Elsaesser, Ole W. Fischer, Gundolf S. Freyermuth, Ursula Frohne, Henry Keazor, Matthias Krüger, Katja Kwastek, Fabienne Liptay, Karl Prümm, Martin Warnke.

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Fabienne Liptay, born 1974, is Professor of film studies at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. Her research interests include the theory and aesthetics of film imagery and narrative; the interrelations between film and the other arts and media; and the institutional frames of the cinema and the museum.

Burcu Dogramaci, born 1971 in Ankara, is Professor of 20th-century and contemporary art at the Department of Art History at the University of Munich, Germany. Her research focuses on the areas of 20th-century and contemporary art; exile, transfer of culture, and migration; urbanity and architecture; intermediality in magazines and photobooks; the history and theory of photography; and fashion history and theory.
Burcu Dogramaci & Fabienne Liptay
Immersion in the Visual Arts and Media

Part 1: Materials and Sensations of Immersion

Burcu Dogramaci
Water, Steam, Light:
Artistic Materials of Immersion

Robin Curtis
Immersion and Abstraction as Measures of Materiality

Katja Kwastek
Immersed in Reflection:
The Aesthetic Experience of Interactive Media Art

Fabienne Liptay
Neither Here nor There:
The Paradoxes of Immersion

Jörg von Brincken
Phantom-Drug-Death Ride:
The Psycho-sensory Dynamic of Immersion in Gaspar Noé’s Enter
the Void

Part 2: Archaeologies and Technologies of Immersion

Karl Prümm
From the Unchained to the Ubiquitous Motion-Picture Camera:
Camera Innovations and Immersive Effects

Gundolf S. Freyermuth
From Analog to Digital Image Space:
Toward a Historical Theory of Immersion

Martin Warnke
On the Spot:
The Double Immersion of Virtual Reality

Ursula Frohne
Expansion of the Immersion Zone:
Military Simulacra between Strategic Training and Trauma

Thomas Elsaesser
Immersion between Recursiveness and Reflexivity: Avatar

Part 3: Landscapes and Architectures of Immersion

Henry Keazor
Projection Rooms:
Film as an Immersive Medium in the Architecture of Jean Nouvel

Ole W. Fischer
“The Treachery of Images”:
Architecture, Immersion, and the Digital Realm

Matthias Krüger
Painting Immersion:
Hans Thoma’s Landscapes

Matthias Bauer
Immersive Exhibition Design:
Titanic Belfast and the Concept of Scenography

Notes on Contributors
Index of Names
This publication addresses an international academic readership and is of central interest to scholars in the fields of fine arts, film, and new media. Furthermore, we aim at a readership of students on a postgraduate and an advanced undergraduate level with an interdisciplinary interest in visual arts and media.