Ways of Seeing (1972) John Berger

Ways of Seeing was a collection of four programs created by John Berges in 1972. They were created to help people understand the concepts of the painting, and the "process of seeing a painting". In the first episode, he explains about perspective and the originality of paintings and how they "changed after the camera captured the image and sent it around the world". He explains how cropping the images into different sections can changed there perspective, meaning and seen in "the context of your own life" (your surroundings and not within their frames were they usually hang)

"Its the image which now travels to you and no longer resides in its original surface and its meaning can becomes transmittable.. the faces of paintings become messages... pieces of information to be used to purchase their reproductions".

With the invention of television, cameras and the internet, the production of photos from original source can be made available to anyone in huge amounts of copies, edits and variations meaning that some of the original meaning is lost as they are "pinned to the wall".

"The images remain still within their frames - occasionally the stillness of the painting can make it most striking... pictures can be used for easily manipulation. they can be used to make arguments or points... completely different from its original meaning. Its manipulated with moment and sound."

His example of Venus explains that the crop of the image has changed it from "an allegorical figure to a beautiful girl which can be seen anywhere".

So the cropping an image and adding movement and sound can change its meaning to something simple or change it into something the image wasn't meant to be intended as. Therefore can we say that the reproduction of images changes the painting into something it is not  or does it simply try or take the original and its the perception of the audience which changes it?

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