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Illuminating History by Lily Díaz, 25.IX.2000

In the West, there are standards, too. As Victor Burgin has noted, "space has a history..." [and]..."it is not as Kant would have it, a product of a priori, inherently

Euclidian categories."2 4

Pre-modern space, was bounded; things within it were

assigned a place along a predominantly vertical axis-- heaven-earth-hell, or the chain of being.2 5XXX(Cite example.) Modern space, invented in the Renaissance via central perspective, was Euclidean, horizontal, infinitely extensible, and therefore boundless. XXX(Cite example.) Modern space was also the space of the humanist subject in its mercantile entrepreneurial incarnation. Our Post-modern, electronic space, is the abstract space of the market. Unfolding, and imploding, it is a space where geographical distance is eliminated physically, yet recreated in the psyche.2 6

XXX(Cite example.)

The analysis of the invention, and its development and implementation can reveal much not only about the history of art, but also about the history of ideas in the West. XXX(Refer the reader to diverse sources here. Must compile a list.)

Central perspective was a system of representation developed in Europe primarily during the Renaissance. It has been proposed that central perspective emerged from the desire to find an objective basis for the depiction of visual objects, a "method

independent of the idiosyncrasies of the draftsman's eye and hand."2 7

Such method

was actualised in the notion of the visual pyramid developed by Leon Battista Alberti in 1435 his treatise Della Pittura. The treatise illustrated how the relation between the eye of the observer and the object being represented could be described by a series of straight lines emerging from each point of the object's frontal surface and meeting in the eye in the form of a pyramid, or cone, whose zenith is at the point of the eye. If the resulting pyramid is intersected by a glass pane perpendicular to the line of sight, the resulting image on the glass will be a projection of the object, so that by tracing the outlines on the glass "as seen from the point of observation the viewer can record an

IMAGE imgs/index04.gif
24. Burgin, V., "Geometry and Abjection" IMAGE imgs/index16.gif 1989., p.36. 25. Burgin, "Geometry and Abjection", Ibid.
26. Burgin, V., "Geometry and Abjection", p. 37.
27. IMAGE imgs/index17.gif p.,283.