Looking and Seeing: LANG/MAGRITTE

Open your eyes,

turn your head,

direct your gaze and attention toward something.

You are looking, which is not the same as seeing.



Between looking and seeing there’s a gulf that sucks up likeness, actuality, will.

Seeing is conjugated as a personal verb. Deceptively. Because seeing parts company with subject, and with object ­– instituting only the image.



* Pictures 1 & 2: Scarlet Street, Fritz Lang, 1945 (all paintings in the film are by John Decker).

* Picture 3: Clairvoyance, René Magritte, 1936.


© Cristina Álvarez López, April 2019

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