My essay on The Latent Image has just been published by the online International Journal of the Image, my keynote for the inaugural conferenc on the image at UCLA. The journal and the publishing platform are worthy of support; I'm grateful that they allowed me to make this essay available open source: here's the abstract
How can we describe a moving image, composed of thousands of successive images, as “an” image? I want to explore the possibility that the coherence of the image is premised on latency. A latent image is one which is captured in photographic film prior to development. It is by nature invisible. Similarly invisible latent states structure lenses, aperture ratios, compositing, grading and edits. Looking at the codec wars currently breaking out in preparation for HTML5, this talk investigates the relationships between the aesthetics and political economy of the image in the 21st century.