Colloque international : « Tele→ Visions: Technologies of Ubiquity in the Visual Arts, 19th-21st centuries » (Paris, 3-4 octobre 2023)

This event is convened by the research group IMAGO-Cultures Visuelles (Dr. Pascal Rousseau, Professor of Contemporary Art History, Dr. Pierre-Jacques Pernuit, and Ph.D. candidates Léa Dreyer, Evgenii Kozlov and Clara M. Royer) from the Centre de recherche Histoire Culturelle et Sociale de l’Art (HiCSA), with its generous support as well as that of the École Doctorale 441 d’Histoire de l’art, the Collège des écoles doctorales de l’Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and the Laboratoire International de Recherches en Art (LIRA EA7343, Université Paris 3 Sorbonne Nouvelle).

The international symposium Télé—Visions brings together a body of recent work on the influence of emission, transmission and reception technologies in the visual arts and visual culture, from the 19th century to the present. Beyond the medium of television itself, the plural “tele-visions” refers to the variety of remote viewing and image transmission techniques which, from semaphores to wireless telegraphy and up to fiber optics and contemporary networks, have configured new models for the circulation and transmission of images. Dialoguing with the history of science and technology as well as with media archaeology, the contributors to the conference will explore broad topics such as the joint evolution of perceptual regimes and remote transmission techniques, the modalities of “prosthetic vision,” the material effects of image transmission and the spatio-temporal issues inherent to network dynamics.

This conference takes as its core hypothesis that the “conquest of ubiquity” by the transport of images at any time and in any place described by Paul Valéry in 1928 anticipated the contemporary society of globalized exchanges and, as such, marks a turning point in the history of art. The association IMAGO—Cultures Visuelles proposes to study this turning point, placing it within the historical panorama of the great artistic changes brought about by technology, in the spirit of the importance respectively given to reproduction and storage technologies by Walter Benjamin and Friedrich A. Kittler. Recent research in media studies shows a growing interest in visual telecommunication technologies through such key concepts of “circulation,” “flow” and “network.” Télé—Visions proposes to broaden the scope of this new conceptual understanding of images by exploring the social factors, cultural strategies and technical-aesthetic concerns that have shaped the history of transmitted images and the artistic use of telecommunications.

This event is free and open to the public without reservation. The conference will be live-streamed via zoom. It will be held in French and English.

Venue : Auditorium Jacqueline Lichtenstein, Institut national d’histoire de l’art (INHA), 2 rue Vivienne 75002 Paris, France.



TUESDAY, October, 3

2 p.m. Introduction

2:15 pm Pascal Rousseau (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Psychométrie. La fantaisie de la rétrovision

2:45 pm André Lange (, L’invention littéraire de la vision à distance


3:15 pm Coffee break


3:30 pm Evgenii Kozlov (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Carrying the Sign into the Distance: Aerial Telegraphy, or Writing/Reading Images in the Landscape

4:00 pm Doron Galili (University of Gothenburg/Stockholm University), Recording and Transmitting Electrical Images in the Fin-de-siecle


4:30 pm Coffee break


4:45 pm Antonio Somaini (Université Sorbonne-Nouvelle), Transparency, Dissolution, Wireless Transmission: László Moholy-Nagy’s Dematerialization of Technical Media

5:15 pm Pierre-Jacques Pernuit (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Distant Lights: Avant-garde TV Experiments in the Interwar


WEDNESDAY, October, 4

9:30 am Gillian Young (Wofford College), Archaeologies of Telepresence in the Early Work of Joan Jonas

10:00 am Léa Dreyer (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), “Some Circumstances that Separate Us”: Implicit Sonicity in Lars Fredrikson’s Fax Art

10:30 am Beatriz Escribano Belmar (Universidad de Salamanca), Reproduction, Transmission, and Distance: Revealing the Aesthetics of Poor Images in Artistic Fax Exchanges


11:00 am Coffee break


11:15 am Francesco Spampinato (Università di Bologna), Access to Tools: Guerrilla Television, Media Art and the late 1960s Counterculture

11:45 am Jean-Paul Fourmentraux (Aix-Marseille Université), sousveillance: L’œil du contre-pouvoir


12:15 am Lunch break


2:00 pm Anne-Katrin Weber (UNIL Lausanne), Televisual Mission Control, ca.1969

2:30 pm Brooke Belisle (Stony Brook University), Mediating the Moon: Imaging as Observation and Simulation


3:00 pm Coffee break


3:15 pm Clara M. Royer (Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Communicationsphere: Sarah Dickinson and Aldo Tambellini’s geopolitics of telepresence

3:45 pm Kris Paulsen (Ohio State University), Martian Time Slips: Telepresent Views of a Future Mars


4:15 pm Discussion and closing remarks.




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