It is with great pleasure that we welcome you to the third issue of Art Style Magazine, a peer-reviewed, open-access magazine. In this edition, we have highlighted several innovative essays wherein we seek to understand the process of configuring the contemporary image, addressing cultural diversity internationally. In this sense, the study of image addresses different conceptions in the context of creation, aesthetics, ethics, and media and their effects in a global society, as well as local communities and nations. These effects are essential to the process of transformation, not only through the formal results of images in a global economy – regarding the relationships of production and productive forces – but also through the symbolic values that give these images cultural significance. Therefore, given the importance of images in contemporary society, it is essential to reflect on the social participation of humankind through their traditional representations or innovations in the world of arts and communication, in search of a democratic ideal, social involvement, and politicization. As such, we highlight the 58th International Art Exhibition, the Venice Biennale (2019), titled May You Live In Interesting Times, with Florencia Battiti’s essay about the artwork “The Name of a Country” by artist Mariana Telleria from Argentina. Subsequently, in the current state of art systems, the essay “Towards a Theory of the Aesthetic Situation” by Professor Hans Dieter Huber of the State Academy of Fine Arts Stuttgart is essential.
In the face of new technologies and continuous image configurations, one possible explanation is found in the research of Lars Christian Grabbe, Professor for Theory of Perception, Communication, and Media at the MSD – Münster School of Design at the University of Applied Sciences Münster, Germany. In his essay entitled “The Hyperaesthetics of Technology,” he discusses the status of contemporary imagery formed by the new principles of digital technology, simulating scenarios and environments. Regarding the arts scene and the role of social media, we also highlight how selfies and poses dominate social media platforms with so-called ‘Social Photos’ in the essay “Identity and Authenticity on Social Media: ‘How to Take a Selfie’ for Instagram with Artist Andy Kassier” by Pamela C. Scorzin, Professor of Art History and Visual Culture Studies at Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Department of Design, Germany.
Furthermore, image presence and works of art in contemporary societies are linked with technological development and intervene in the conception of the world with its characteristics and needs, varying by culture, society, and economy. Thus, contemporary cultures and arts present their distinct “social realities” and may have a stronger imagination than an image, especially in the absence of images. In this sense, we highlight the essay “The Blink Between: Thinking About the (Un)Seen in Drone Warfare” by Svea Braeunert, a DAAD Visiting Associate Professor in German Studies at the University of Cincinnati.
Another significant contribution is the essay titled “Questioning Soft Power: An Empirical Approach of the Reception of Turkish Soap-Operas by Greeks” by Dimitra Laurence Larochelle from New Sorbonne University, Paris, France. Hence, the substantive essay “The Role of Modernity, Media and Communication in the Critical and Transformative Potential of the Everyday Space” discusses framed images in the daily practice of architecture related to cinematography. This essay was written by the renowned architect and professor Katarina Andjelkovic from the University of Oklahoma, Chair of Creative Architecture, Institute of Form Theory and History and Institute of Urbanism and Landscape in Oslo and the University of Belgrade.
Thus, these works describe the character of cultural globalization, which incites a hypothesis on the existence of a dominant perception of “reappropriations” and significant mediations, considering that image settings seek – above all – a statute that could lead to a universality of understanding amid the particularities of cultural difference. Finally, our editions maintain a contemporary view of visual cultures and image configuration to reflect the world of ideas, the arts, and communication.
Enjoy your reading!
Christiane Wagner, editor-in-chief