IMAGE 10 (Ausgabe Juli 2009) 



  • Aneta Rostkowska: Critique of Lambert Wiesing’s phenomenological theory of picture

  • Nicolas Romanacci: Pictorial Ambiguity. Approaching ›applied cognitive aesthetics‹ from a Philosophical Point of View

  • Petra Bernhardt: ›Einbildung‹ und Wandel der Raumkategorie ›Osten‹ seit 1989: Werbebilder als soziale Indikatoren

  • Evelyn Runge: Ästhetik des Elends. Thesen zu sozialengagierter Fotografie und dem Begriff des Mitleids

  • Stefan Hölscher: Bildstörung – zur theoretischen Grundlegung einer experimentell-empirischen Bilddidaktik

  • Katharina Lobinger: Facing the picture – Blicken wir dem Bild ins Auge! Vorschlag für eine meta-analytische Auseinandersetzung mit visueller Medieninhaltsforschung.

  • Birgit Imhof, Halszka Jarodzka, Peter Gerjets: Classifying instructional visualizations: A psychological approach

  • Tagungsbericht


Critique of Lambert Wiesing’s phenomenological theory of picture
Autor: Aneta Rostkowska
In the course of the article several problems concerning the phenomenological picture theory are presented. The most serious ones are: the unclear ontological status of the pictorial intentional object and the mysterious relation between this element and the material basis of the picture.

Pictorial Ambiguity. Approaching ›applied cognitive aesthetics‹ from a Philosophical Point of View
Autor: Nicolas Romanacci
Ambiguity commonly counts as a specific feature of art, implying quite general importance. Though authors like Gombrich did stress its importance for an aesthetic analysis, there’s no comprehensive study at hand regarding ambiguity in art that offers an investigation of the symbol theoretical, the media-specific and the epistemological aspects of ambiguity. My investigation aims to contribute to a view on ambiguity that explores these aspects (or ›levels‹) and particularly also tries to relate these levels to each other – presuming that a differentiated theoretical discourse serves as an important point of departure for a differentiated description of different types of ambiguity, to be precisely elaborated through analysing specific and concrete works of art. Subsequently, it is intended that only differentiated results of investigating the ›theoretical level‹ and the ›media level‹ can serve as a sound reference for statements on a ›general level‹. One basic point of departure for my investigation is the view on interpreting aesthetic experience in terms of treating an artwork as a symbolic object (understood in a conceivable broad sense). Therefore we have to look closely at the ways of reference an artwork has to offer, for this is one important way to analyse how an artwork can be understood. I want to forge an application of this general ›cognitive‹ approach to an analysis of concrete artworks and propose to interprete my investigation as exemplifying an approach to an ›applied cognitive aesthetics‹. This article is an excerpt from my study providing some examples from the applied ›media level‹ and closing with some epistemological considerations.

›Einbildung‹ und Wandel der Raumkategorie ›Osten‹ seit 1989: Werbebilder als soziale Indikatoren
Autor: Petra Bernhardt
Using the example of the depiction of the spatial category ›East‹ in advertising, the article focuses on advertising images as social indicators and asks which possibilities and limits an image-oriented advertising research has to face.

Ästhetik des Elends. Thesen zu sozialengagierter Fotografie und dem Begriff des Mitleids
Autor: Evelyn Runge
Photographies are said to be powerful even in an over-visualized world. Especially pictures made in the tradition of documentary photography are believed to change the world. At the same time critics and recipients often claim concerned photography romanticizes the suffering of others. Still, photography, picturing diseases, famine and the results of war become a part of contemporary art, to be shown in museums and galleries, and also to be merchandised in the international art market. Keywords in the discussion about contemporary documentary photography are compassion, humanism, ethics and aesthetics. However, the theoretical approaches toward contemporary documentary photography are still missing definitions of the afore mentioned key terms.

Bildstörung – zur theoretischen Grundlegung einer experimentell-empirischen Bilddidaktik
Autor: Stefan Hölscher
The term ›visual competence‹ plays an important role in current debates about the relevance of art teaching in schools as part of a comprehensive review of the education system. Determining a theoretical didactic basis for this term is shown to be a genuine problem in image science. Both the science and the didactics of images require a process model of understanding images. The term ›image perturbation‹, which Hans Dieter Huber introduced into the debate about art teaching, is used to good effect here in this process approach. It is demonstrated that the process approach implies the concept of a ›possibility space‹ or ›expectation space‹. This space is a precondition for the effects and indications of didactic action to be observed and thus empirically studied. The term ›expectation space‹ contains two inextricably linked concepts: the perspective of describing an image in philosophical terms, and the study of its empirical psychological effects.

Facing the picture – Blicken wir dem Bild ins Auge! Vorschlag für eine meta-analytische Auseinandersetzung mit visueller Medieninhaltsforschung.
Autor: Katharina Lobinger
In the last decade the amount of empirical research on pictures in mass communication has risen significantly. This is especially remarkable since several authors (MÜLLER 2003; PRZYBORSKI 2008) criticise the absence of own visual methods in communication research. This is critical because the employed methods were mostly developed for the study of entirely different kinds of pictures in other disciplines. Katharina Lobinger’s dissertation which is to be completed at the Department of Communication (University of Vienna) concentrates on visual (mass) communication research understood as a specific image science that does not try to create knowledge about images in general, but about specific image types in certain fields; in this case about media images. The main target is to examine how visual media content is being examined in communication research, which methods are used or adapted and on which theories and definitions the studies are based. Therefore in a meta-analysis, or in other words in a »content analysis of content analyses« (RIFFE; FREITAG 1997: 515) all research articles published since 1990 in relevant international journals of communication research are examined. Research journals are the ›nerves‹ of a discipline and thus a barometer of its substantive focus and its dominant research methods. Therefore the research material consists of the discipline’s most prestigious journals and of contributions in thematic journals to account for new, maybe not widely approved, approaches. A, at first sight, paradoxical situation is to be dismantled with this analysis: While the lack of methods for visual analysis is constantly bemoaned, vivid research is going on and the studies prove that despite the scarce method repertoire, creative and innovative research designs can generate interesting results and knowledge about images. This meta-analysis represents a methodological approach facilitating visual content research by systemising the existing empirical approaches.

Classifying instructional visualizations: A psychological approach
Autoren: Birgit Imhof, Halszka Jarodzka, Peter Gerjets
The use of instructional visualizations has become very popular in the last decades, especially due to the rapid development of technical solutions. Visualization is a broad concept with diverse dimensions. Visualizations do not only vary with regard to their structural features (e.g., dynamism, interactivity), but they also have different functional features (e.g., decoration, representation, organization). Psychological research has investigated these two dimensions particularly in learning contexts. Moreover, a third dimension of visualizations, namely the depicted contents, has been identified. However, the high variability of visualizations is challenging with regard to generalizability of empirical research results found with a specific type of instructional visualization. Therefore, a generic classification system is needed to be able to structure the wide body of research. Although, some attempts to address the classification of visualizations have already been made (e.g., LOHSE et al. 1994; RANKIN 1990), those focus only on either structural or functional dimensions of visualizations. The current work reviews psychological literature on all three aforementioned dimensions aiming at developing a classification system covering the structural features, the functions, and the depicted contents. The classification system allows assigning visualizations to classes of similar visualizations with regard to all three identified dimensions. This classification system (in form of a questionnaire) was evaluated with ten subjects classifying six different visualizations in order to test the interrater reliability, to assess the usability during filling in the questionnaire, and to investigate its applicability to different types of visualizations. Data analyses revealed high, or close to high interrater reliabilities for all six visualizations. These results indicate that a questionnaire-based classification system can be used to objectively classify visualizations.

Tagungsbericht zur Internationalen Fachkonferenz Bilder – Sehen – Denken (18.-20. März 2009)