Saturday, April 23, 2011

Reading Camera Lucida

I finally got to reading the book Camera Lucida by the French sociologist Roland Barthes, translated into Finnish as Valoisa huone (originally La Chambre Claire). The Finnish translation helped to read the book, and it was not as dense or obscure as I had feared.

But still, it will be probably years until I know what the book is really about - I have to read it again at some point.

That the single thing which makes a photograph into photograph is that it represents something that has been, and thus makes past as real as the present, although killing the past at the same time, this was interesting. But all the subtle implications, aspecially concerning the madness of photography, these require further thought.

We went today to the Luukki outdoor park, and it was nice, temperature at +17 °C, bright sunshine. I don't think these photographs are mad, although perhaps they should be, mad with the joy of spring which was, but is now (at some future moment) gone.

Also, there will be a break in the postings here.


Anonymous said...


Where did you find the finnish edition of the book?
Where can I buy it? Would you like to sell yours?
Best regards.

Juha Haataja said...

The book is available in the public libraries in the Helsinki region.

The name of the book is "Valoisa huone = La chambre claire = Camera lucida" (Suomen valokuvataiteen museon säätiö, 1985; ISBN 951-615-365-8).

I think I'll borrow it once again from the library, it is a book which isn't easy to digest at one go.