Aesthetic Experience in Virtual Museums: A Postphenomenological Perspective

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Bart G. Moens

Abstract


This article explores the impact of the digitization of traditional works of art on the aesthetic experience from a philosophical point of view. Presenting and making use of a recent approach in the philosophy of technology, initiated by the American philosopher Don Ihde, called postphenomenology. This hybrid form of phenomenology builds on traditional phenomenology and combines it with a pragmatic approach in order to focus on the mediating roles of technology. Concrete technologies and applications such as screens and virtual museums are the starting point for our examination of the specific character of these digital media, which are then compared with their physical referents. Following Ihde’s arguments, we show that digital image technologies, and digital images themselves, are not merely functional, but shape perceptions and experiences. Although currently the positive effects and opportunities of these new applications are emphasized in the field – for collection management, the democratization and accessibility of art, possibilities to interact and intervene in the image, efficient marketing, etc. – they do have a significant impact on the way in which art is experienced.


Article Details

How to Cite
Moens, B. (2018). Aesthetic Experience in Virtual Museums: A Postphenomenological Perspective. Studies in Digital Heritage, 2(1), 68-79. https://doi.org/10.14434/sdh.v2i1.24468
Section
Special Issue "Perceiving CH through Digital Technologies"