• Neorealism between Cinema and Architecture: Looking for New Signs

    Marianna Charitonidou (see profile)
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    In Cinema 2: The Time-Image, Gilles Deleuze sees World War II as a historical event underpinning divergent taxonomies; the post-war period greatly increases the situations in which we are faced with spaces we no longer know how to describe, to which we longer know how to react. Deleuze refers to a crisis of the action-image in cinema, which corresponds to the war’s historical caesura. In Italian neorealist cinema, he sees a delinkage between the affection-image, the perception-image and the relation-image, and identifies certain formal inventions that reduce the distance between fiction and reality. The result is the production of a formal or material ‘additional reality’, a kind of formalism in the service of content. This leads Deleuze to ask whether the problem of the real arises in relation to form or to content. I, however, examine the possibility of applying Deleuze’s same question regarding neorealism to the domain of architecture. Neorealism in cinema is associated with the subordination of the image to the demands of new signs. For example, in neorealism, the montage of representations is replaced by the sequence shot. This leads to the invention of a new type of image, the ‘fact-image’, which address a new form of reality. As André Bazin notes of Roberto Rossellini’s films, the neorealist reversal of the image’s subordination to montage serves as a critique of how pre-established meanings (in images) are imposed on the spectator. In relation to architecture, this leads us critique pre-established meanings of spaces in postwar architecture. For instance, what new types of signs emerge in architecture as a result of World War II? And how can we see a notion of virtual becoming taking place in architecture? Neorealist architecture understands constructions in relation to a rhythm of aggregation evident in their successive elements.
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    12 months ago


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