All those attempts to bring in everything around you are part of a naïve belief that you can recreate the whole world. Well, you can’t. Where would you put it? Next to the whole world?
November 27, 2012 § Leave a comment
For the most part, when the internet acknowledges a sublime other than its own, it does so by sharing free of commentary. The expressions of Sandy’s power that most amazed me were reblogged images: the Jane’s Carousel lit up but surrounded by water, Avenue C transformed into a river, Zach van Schouwen’s version of the first partial-service subway map with affected lines erased. There was a sort of silence about the internet that night. The tweets came as fast as ever, but unembellished. Usually, the internet is a competition to see who can be the most creative with reported material, but during Sandy’s most destructive hours, the internet was content to just report.
I think of the contrast between real photos of Sandy’s destruction and photo-shopped parodies of the many fake photos that went viral. The real photos, shot at night, are dark or poorly lit and often blurry. They are striking because the reality they capture is striking. Often, they show man-made structures—cars, carrousels, subway stations—surrounded by wild water. They make you feel the natural sublime.
The parody photos, on the other hand, revel in the technological sublime. My favorite is the faked photo of the swirling cloud over the statue of liberty, faked-up even more with flying saucers, Godzilla, and the giant marshmallow man from Ghostbusters. read more