, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 179-183
Date: 08 Oct 2011

Movements of discovery: the pragmatics of practice-based research

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Abstract

This commentary to Vanhoutte and Wynants’s paper “Performing phenomenology: negotiating presence in intermedial theatre” tries to ascertain whether the dialectics between the real and the virtual in CREW’s artistic and technological experiments, which the authors call a ‘strategy,’ implies an a-priori relation that is hard to reconcile to the ethos of discovering through doing proposed by postphenomenological research, and to an ‘empirical turn’ based in case studies and descriptive concreteness suggested by a ‘pragmatic phenomenology.’ I propose that the shift from live to mediated perception in CREW’s experimental productions, producing a multistable ontology, is less occasion for strategic dialectics and Benjaminian ‘illumination’ of our mediatized culture, than for an analytic perspective on what actually happens when the shift occurs and what this tells us about our relationship to digital technologies of reproduction.