Back to Writing with Pictures
Hi, Lou Ann,
Here's a sample passage: "If, as [the critic Gunther Kress, 2000] ha[s] suggested, the visual and the verbal provide fundamentally distinct possibilities for engagement with the world, then the translation from one mode to another has to be seen in the more radical sense of 'translation as transformation.' In such transformations, the figure of the translator, as a socially formed and located person with his or her own interest, has as always to be taken into account. But that apart, the 'affordances'--what any semiotic system makes possible or rules out--are the starting point for any serious attempt to understand this process of translation/transformation. Are language and image doing the same? Can they ever do the same?" (p.78)
When I read this it made me think immediately of the monuments you design and the ones you showed me, how they are becoming full of more and more images . . . As my "resident expert," so to speak, would you mind emailing me your thoughts about the changing nature of the visual in monument design? Why do people put tractors and windmills and apple pies on their monuments? Is it because now they can do it? Why don't they just write Emma Smith. A Fine Pie Baker. Why the picture of the apple pie and not the words? What does a picture on a monument do that words can't or don't?
Yes, I imagine there are some spatial considerations--aren't there?--but still, why the pictures? When you talk with people planning their monuments, what do they express or reveal that hints to their thinking about the images they choose and the effects that they hope for these images to have on those who come to view their monument?