What is Seen In a Photo?


The Philosopher as Self-Portrait of the Photographer

All, the All itself, would have begun with a flash, the lightning-bolt of the One not so much illuminating a World that was already there, as making it surge forth as the figure of those things that its fulguration would have forever outlined for the West. Such is the philosophical legend of the originary flash, of the birth of the World, a legend of the birth of philosophy in the spirit of photography. Philosophy announces that the Cosmos is a ‘shot’, and announces itself as this creative shot of the World. Heraclitus’ child at play would, in the end,have been nothing but a photographer. And not just any photographer: a ‘transcendental’ photographer, since in photographing the world, he produces it; but a photographer with no camera, and perhaps for that very reason destined ceaselessly to take new shots of that first flash—consigned to extinction—constrained thus to comment interminably on that first shot by taking yet more, to engage himself in a unlimited-becoming-photographic—so as to verify that the flash, the World, the flash of the World—that is to say, philosophy—really has taken place, and was not just a trick of the senses…