Anda di halaman 1dari 12

A Neglected Tradition? Art History as "Bildwissenschaft" Author(s): Horst Bredekamp Source: Critical Inquiry, Vol. 29, No.

3 (Spring, 2003), pp. 418-428 Published by: The University of Chicago Press Stable URL: Accessed: 13/10/2010 04:43
Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and you may use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use. Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained at Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printed page of such transmission. JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact

The University of Chicago Press is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Critical Inquiry.

A NeglectedTradition? Horst Bredekamp

ArtHistoryas Bildwissenschaft

1. TheImageandthe Arts: Artificial An Split Because meaning theGerman the of wordBildincludes image, picture, and the has in figure, illustration, termBildwissenschaftno equivalence the It difference deepening is an English language. seemsas if thislinguistic distinction between and art ongoing English- German-speakinghistory. In Austria Germany principal and the elements the discipline of were a major of revival arthistory Bildwissenschaft place German as took in art nonartmassphotography, Advertisements, film, history. photography, and became When and video, political iconography regular subjects. digital netart became werealmost included within the feasible, they immediately
Bildwissenthen,two essential historyof art.'Historically, pointscomprise createdaround1900oo continuedto be developed and until 1933. After1970

embraced whole ofimages the field the first, schaft: arthistory beyond visual it and,secondly, tookallof theseobjects arts, seriously. In the English-speaking though, proliferation media the of has world, notbeentheonlycomplicating inreachingconsensus howBildfactor a on

I would to thank like and Stafford their for critical Lavin, Barbara James Elkins, Irving readings of thispaper, which presented different was in versions theGetty at of conference "Frames 2002 Art "The 2002 Berlin, andtheClark Institute's conference ArtHistorian." Viewing," 1. Somesignificant in Henriette examples, although published later years, besufficient: may um Viith's dissertation "Odol: Reklame-Kunst 19oo" (Ph.D. diss., 1985; magnificent Gie1fen, see alsoHenriette Odol Reklame-Kunst19oo um Odol: Vath-Hinz, [Berlin, 1985])onthemouthwash of Bodo "'So bei around asa forerunner surrealism; vonDewitz, wird unsderKrieg 19oo geftihrt!' im in on Munich, diss., (Ph.D. 1989) soldiers' Amateurfotografieersten Weltkrieg" photographs World I;Marin War in Bildindex Politischen zur "Politische Warnke, Ikonographie," Ikonographie, ed.Warnke Edith Decker's fundamental on NamJune work Paik: Paik, 1993), 5-12; (Hamburg, pp. Video and Dieter of Huber's historicizationthereflection netart art of in 1988); Hans (Cologne, the zu Geschichte Kunst Netz," Bilder der im in in history, "Digging Net-Materialien einer Traditionen ed. Hemken Asthetik, Kai-Uwe 2000), pp.158-74. Bewegung: digitaler (Cologne,
Critical Inquiry 29 (Spring 200oo3) All S200oo3 The Universityof Chicago.oo93-1896/o3/29o3---oool$lo.oo. rights reserved. by


Critical / 419 Inquiry Spring 20o3 In should recent advertisement journal ofthe wissenschaft bedefined. a very "The wefindthefollowing statement: cross-disciplinary and Visual Studies, will of nature thejournal be reflected thecoverage anof multi-modal by visual cultural media studies, studies, culture, symthropology, sociology, information bolicinteraction, ..., documentary photography technology, and studies."2 studVisual visual visual literacy, intelligence communication definition arthistory not. of is is that iestherefore everything thenarrowest of and studies theEnglishin Thiskindof separation arthistory visual in and world beena significant has development Germany Austria speaking exefforts establishBildwissenschaftby to a aswell, where similar completely because modern scholars have art Perhaps cluding history beenundertaken. of the haveinternalized development memory whatBildwissenschaft this it that of oncewasis nowin danger beinglost.Recently hasbeenargued modbecause confronted failed Bildwissenschaft it never as arthistory had if Erwin Pawouldhavebecome Bildwissenschaft a ernmedia; iconology of this into hadnot encapsulated method ananalysis Renaissance nofsky of art the Therefore, century, following tradition thenineteenth allegory.3 the arts has to history beenforced neglect media anddealonlywithworks art.4 of "high" art whose name whichcomesfroma leading historian Thisargument, of thediscipline, be can stands a veryopen-minded for conceptualization is obThe of as taken symptomatic. concept arthistory Bildwissenschaft as one it theobject a conscious of amnesia; hasto reconstructandask viously oblivion. for forthereasons thisgeneral 2. Bildgeschichte Photography through Heinrich morethantwenty Dillyargued years thattheriseof acaago universities thenineteenth in would demicarthistory German at century It is indeed how without havebeenimpossible astonishing photography.5
for 2. Webpage Visual Studies, eine 3. SeeHans 2001), Entwiirfefifr Bildwissenschaft(Munich, p. 15. Belting, Bild-Anthropologie: 4. Seeibid., 17. p. zur einer alsInstitution: Studien Geschichte Disziplin 5. SeeHeinrich Dilly, Kunstgeschichte in recent literature given Wiebke is am (Frankfurt Main, 1979),p. 149.Themore Ratzeburg, im Wie ihre "Mediendiskussion19. Jahrhundert: dieKunstgeschichte wissenschaftliche Grundlage
no. in der Fotografie fand,"Kritische Berichte3o, 1 (2002): 22-39, and IngeborgReichle, Kritische Berichte no. 1 (2002): 40-56. "Medienbrtiche," 3o, P of Berlin, D University, Ho RST BRE EK AM is professor arthistoryat Humboldt andtheCultof theMachine is the authorof TheLure Thomas (1995), ofAntiquity Visual and Peter RomunddasPrinzip in Hobbes's der (1999), Sankt Strategies BauundAbbau Bramante Bernini von bis (2ooo). produktiven Zerstdrung:


HorstBredekamp/ Art Historyas Bildwissenschaft

how and, early, enthusiastically, atthesametime,howself-consciouslysome

of the leading historians art the In to praised newmedium. contrast the of photography artists, critics, members theirown art and of rejection by these work a towards discipline,6 scholars' thusconstitutednewperspective

Alfred art in who art Woltmann, historian Karlsruhe, triedto practice in a scientifically fashion renamed artscience and it (Kunstprecise history defended in wissenschaft), enthusiastically photography1864: "Photography haspartly or woodcut engraving, and but assisted, displaced paragonized it hasenlarged, and the recfacilitated, improved toolsandaimsof artistic reation before world famous And, nearly twenty years infinitely."' in 1865, scientists Robert like Koch that"the of a miargued photographic picture can certain be circumstances more than croscopic object under important Hermann who become first prothe full itself,"8 Grimm, would [theobject] fessor arthistory Berlin of at in called a collection art for of University 1873, historical thatthese archives become could of photographs, arguing "today than of Grimm artichigher importance thegreatest galleries originals."9 ulates herewhatErwin later the of Panofsky called, ironically, "rejection thusnaming basicconflict arthistory: it depends the in that originals,"10 on of but it largely theautopsy theoriginal thatit questions alsothrough thelensofphotographic-founded Wilhelm knowledge. probablythe Ltibke, mostpopular historian thenineteenth art of didnot evenseea century,"
6. SeeElizabeth McCauley, Anne Industrial Madness: inParis, Commercial 1848Photography Conn., (NewHaven, 1994), 274-77, andDorothea 292, Peters, ... dieTeilnahme 1871 pp. "' ftir im Kunst Publikum steigern denGeschmack veredeln': zu und zu Fotografische nach der in (1874-1896)," Kunstreproduktionen Werken Berliner NationalgaleriederAraJordan in Verwandlungen Licht: durch inMuseen Archiven Bibliotheken, & & ed. Fotografieren Landschaftsverband Rheinland RundbriefFotografie und (Dresden, 2000), 168, pp. 173. 7. "Die hat und theils theils theils Photographie Holzschnitt Kupferstich sekundirt, verdriingt, Mittel der aber zumWettkampfherausgefordert, undAufgaben kiinstlerischen Nachsch6pfung in dasunendliche vervollkommnet" Woltmann, Photographie "Die im erweitert, erleichtert, (Alfred Dienste Kunstgeschichte," der Deutsche Politik lo 355; ]ahrbiicherfiir undLiteratur [18641: compare Elisabeth Heinrich Gustav und Ein Ziemer, Hotho, Kunsthistoriker, Kunstkritiker, 1802-1873: Berliner 8. "Das fir ist Bild Umstanden fotografische einesmikroskopischen Gegenstandes unter als selbst" "Zur von Koch, (Robert wichtiger, diesen Untersuchung pathogenen Organismen," aus "Die Schlich, [1881]: see Mittheilungen demkaiserlichen GesundheitsamteI 11; Thomas Wie Bakterien Krankheitsursache als von Koch Reprisentation Krankheitserregern:Robert des hat," Spur, dargestellt in Raume Wissens: Codierung, ed.Hans-J6rg Repriisentation, Michael and [Berlin, 1997],pp.165-90). Hagner, Bettina Wahrig-Schmidt Rheinberger, the von heute Gallerien 9. Hemeant Photoalbumbeperhaps to "wichtiger alsdiegr6sten und Grimm, (Herman [Berlin, 1865],p. 38). Originalen" OberKiinstler Kunstwerke meiner fand sehr 10. "Trotz Abneigung gegen Original-Kunstwerke ichdieTizian-Ausstellung letter ed. schdn" (Erwin 1935, 1910-1968, Dieter Panofsky, to Fritz Korrespondenz Aug. Saxl, Wuttke,vols.[Wiesbaden, 1:848). 5 2001], 11. See"Wilhelm Metzler KunsthistorikerLexikon: Zweihundert Portrits deutschsprachiger Ltibke," Autoren vierJahrhunderten, Bethhausenal.(Stuttgart, p. 249. aus ed.Peter et 1999),
Philosoph[Berlin,1994], p. 199).

Critical 2003 Inquiry/ Spring the conflict.In 1870he sawthatphotography reproduced breathof artistic an immediately sedimentleft overfrom "full as apprehensible originality first Anton Springer, Germany's academicfull professorof animation."'12 in media-historical terms: bookprintas arthistory, defended photography and had an end only to bad calligraphers, as calligraphers forced ing put to bookprinting becomean art, so the manualgraphicartswouldnot be wouldstrengthen on photography photography; the contrary, destroyed by as Burckhardt of photography theirartfulness. Jakob spoke actually Finally, and of a treasure aura.The dangerthat greatworkswoulddisappear lose theirpowerwouldbe averted photography.'3 by These pioneersof academicart historygavevoice to the nineteenthat aidedobjectivity,'4 theyrecognized the but centurybeliefin technically of was sametime thatphotography morethanjusta duplication an object. act Instead, theyopenedup the studyof the technological of reproduction its autonomy.FromW61fflin's critiqueof photographic 1897 by analyzing line one brilliant sculpture-reproduction'5 candrawa straight to Panofsky's and afterstarting the on the original the facsimile. with 1930 Panofsky, essay are confessionthat facsimilereproductions neitherright nor wrongbut that haveto be judgedin theirown stylistic realm,comesto the conclusion all its to the eyehasto sharpen capacity drawdistinctions the moreas origbecomeidentical.'6 inalsand reproductions seemingly in whichby 1900hadbecomestandard academic Also,slideprojection, was instrument asanautopoetic but arthistory,'7 not onlyusedasa didactic guide to research.For Grimmthe multiplyingprojectionhad the same as analyticapproach the microscope.He valuedthe slideprojectionover of the nakedeye for its higherstandard representation the artist's of origHowmuchGrimmreliedon slidesto construct historyasBildart inality.'"
nach des 12. "Involler (Wilhelm Beseelung" Libke,"Photographien Gemalden Louvre: von in Gesellschaft Berlin," Kunst-Chronik 1 [1869]: 5,no. Herausgegeben derphotographischen "Mediendiskussionim 19.Jahrhundert," 45).Compare Ratzeburg, p. 33. "Skizze Fotografie Jacob und bei in Darstellung und 13. SeeKatja Amato, Burckhardt," Abbilder Kunstgeschichte, der ed.Matthias Bruhn 2000),pp.47-60. (Weimar, Deutung: 14. SeeLorraine Daston Peter and "Das in der Galison, BildderObjektivitat,"Ordnungen in ed. Geimer am Kunst, Sichtbarkeit: (Frankfurt Fotografie Wissenschaft, undTechnologie, Peter Main, 2002), p. 57. 15. SeeHeinrich man soll," Wolfflin, "Wie Skulpturen aufnehmen pts.i and2,Zeitschriftfuir
bildende Kunst 6 and 7, n.s. (1896,1897): 224-28, 294-97.


16. See Panofsky, und Faksimilereproduktion," ed. "Original DeutschsprachigeAufsatze, Karen

Michels and Warnke, 2 vols. (Berlin, 1998), 2:1078-90, esp. p. 1088; compare Michael Diers, "Kunst

und Reproduktion: Hamburger Der Faksimilestreit-Zum Wiederabdruck eines unbekannt in Hermann "'... und sie wire dann nicht an der Reproduktion gestorben,'" DerPhotopionier Krone: und und im ed. Photographie Apparatur-Bildkultur Phototechnik 19.Jahrhundert, 1998),pp. 267-78. WolfgangHesse and Timm Starl(Marburg, 17. See Reichle,"Medienbriiche," 42. p. 18. See Grimm,Beitriiage Deutschen zur (Berlin,1897),pp. 359-60. Kulturgeshichte
gebliebenen Panofsky-Aufsatzes von 1930," Idea 5 (1986): 125-37, and Anna M. Eifert-Kornig,


HorstBredekamp Art Historyas Bildwissenschaft /

can cared books. for wissenschaft be demonstrated the factthathe hardly by When HeinrichWolfflinsucceededGrimmas the chairof art historyin
Berlin in 1901,he found 1300 publications, but 15,000 slides.19

and Usingtheseslides,Wilfflinwasableto demonstrate atthesametime

reflect upon his bipolar Kunstgeschichtliche Grundbegriffe through his mag-

icalstyleof doubleprojections. developing categories his fromexamples By of highart,W61lfflin meantthemto be helpfulin understanding visual the cultureof wholeepochsin thebroadest sense.He neverusedthe termBildbut of geschichte, he did callarthistorythe "development modernseeing," whichis in facta broader deeperconcept.20 and and cometoGrimm,Ltibke, Burckhardt, Springer, W61fflin, Panofsky in thatthey includephotographs slidesinsidethe circleof the and gether as tools of estimationof orginalsand that theyvalueprojections research of a massof reproductions slides and the highestorder.Throughthe use and and the they alltriedto underline strengthen auraof the reproduction at the sametime increasethe numberof objectsof studyto developnew methods.In enlevelsof art historicaltools in agreement with statistical media,they largingthe circleof art history'sestimationof reproduction arthistoryprofoundly towards Bildwissenschaft. changed 3. From Photographyto Mass Media was Photography of coursenot only takenas a subjectbut also as an KunstAlfredLichtwark, directorof the Hamburgian objectof research. His proposal to both artfuland amateurish halle,supported photography. Museumof collectin both directionshas been followedby the Hamburg
Arts and Crafts since 1897.21 Through this concept of embracing not only

art artfulphotography also dailylife snapshots, historyhad becomea but in the full senseof beingdedicated both to the artsandto Bildwissenschaft nonartimages. During the FirstWorldWar,films, postcards,posters,and the illusof concentration the visualmedia;in tratedpresscreatedan unparalleled
1917the head of the German army, General Ludendorff, ordered 700 cin-

the emas to be built along the frontlines,as "thewar has demonstrated of imagesand the film as a formof reconnaissance overwhelming power in and influence."22 a strangecoincidence, the sameyearAbyWarburg In
19. See Reichle,"Medienbrfiche," 50. p. Das 20. "Entwicklung modernenSehens"(Wolfflin,Kunstgeschichtliche des Grundbegriffe: Kunst[Basel,1991], 23). der in Problem Stilentwicklung derneueren p. Die der 21. SeeAlfredLichtwark, Bedeutung Amateur-Photographie(Halle, 1894),and Ulrich A "TheMythof Art Photography: Sociological 8, Keller, Historyof Photography no. 4 Analysis,"
(1984): 252.

22. Quotedin Friedrich Film, Typewriter, 129.The Germanreads:"Der Kittler,Grammophon, p. und Machtvon Bildund FilmalsAufklarungs- Beeinflussungsmittel Krieghat die iiberragende Film, Typewriter [Berlin,1986],p. 197). gezeigt"(Kittler,Grammophon,

CriticalInquiry / Spring2003


collected and analyzedthe whole Bildmaterial, expandingLichtwark's trial Itwasan almostobsessive to takepartin thewarthrough methodology. definedhimselfas a "picture-historian, its images.Consequently, Warburg but not as an arthistorian."23

In to into Buttheopposition turned amarriage. reaction thepropaganda World Warburg worked the"picture campaigns" on of theFirst War, press war of "the the during Reformation;24 horror-fantasytheongoing willbe of the beliefin monwithout picture-historical a inconceivable analysis that In of sters."25 theintroduction hisarticle argued arthistory Warburg the to its for could fulfil responsibility thearts byenlarging field include only in sense."26 "images thebroadest text Thisarticle became founding notonlyforpolitical the iconography media. methodology totheconception led for of Its butalso thehistory visual as of "Each of arthistory a "laboratorycultural-scientific picture-history."27 in "turns moreandmoreintoa hisme wroteagain 1917, day," Warburg snake torianof the image."28 onlyWarburg's ritual but Not essay also,of his of of demonstrate concreteness his apthe course, typologies stamps thevalueof a picture the emphasized proach.29 Warburg strongly beyond for limitsof thearts; were, him,the"nervous of perception of they organs
internaland external the contemporary life."30

TheBilderatlas shows of concept "Mnemosyne" theproduct Warburg's as in ofarthistory Bildwissenschaft hewrote 1925-26, "across workthe or,as towardsscience pictorial a of as To shape" itsfinal of-art-history goal.31 give

zu aus 23. "Sagte ihm: ich sei Bildhistoriker, Kunsthistoriker" kein (Diers, Warburg Briefen: den Kommentarezu Kopierbiichern derJahre [Weinheim, 19o5-1918 1991], 230n. 142). p. 24. "'Bilderpressefeldztige"' der (Diers, Schlagbilder: Zurpolitischen Ikonographie Gegenwart am abbreviated [Frankfurt Main,1997],p. 28;hereafter S). 25. "'Dennganzabgesehenvon dem StuckAufhellungtiberLutherund seine Zeit, ist und bleibt ohne eine bildgeschichtliche die Untersuchungdes Monstra-Glaubens Funktionder im (S, Greuelphantasie jetzigenKriegeunfa8bar"' p. 29). 26. "Bilder... im weitesten Sinn"(AbyWarburg, "Heidnisch-antike in Weissagung Wortund Bild zu Luthers Die der Zeiten," Erneuerung heidnischen Antike: Kulturwissenschaftliche zur Beitraige Geschichte europaischen der ed. and 1998],2:490). Renaissance, HorstBredekamp Diers,2 vols. [Berlin, 27. "Laboratorium kulturwissenschaftlicher this (ibid., 2:535); is misleadingly Bildgeschichte" in translated the Englishversionas "laboratory the iconological of scienceofcivilisation" (Warburg, The Prophecyin Wordsand Imagesin the Age of Luther," Renewal "Pagan-Antique ofPagan Contributions the Cultural to trans.DavidBritt[Los Renaissance, Antiquity: Historyof theEuropean Angeles,1999],p. 651). 28. "'Jeder (S, Tag'... 'machtmich mehrund mehrzum Bildgeschichtler"' p. 31). 29. See UlrichRaulff,"IdeaVictrix--Warburg und die Briefmarke," aus Vortriage dem WarburgHaus,ed. WolfgangKempet al. (Berlin,2002), 6:1-36. 30. "Nerv6seAuffangsorgane zeitgenbssischen des innerenund auBerenLebens" (Ernst Gombrich,Aby Warburg [Berlin,1981], 355). p. 31. "Ueberdie Kunstwerkgeschichte Wissenschaft derbildhaftenGestaltung" p. 48 zur von (S, n. 34). SeeWarburg, Bilderatlas Der MartinWarnke ClaudiaBrink(Berlin, and "Mnemosyne,"ed. 2000); this is the officialedition. GeorgesDidi-Hubermanhas recentlygivena new interpretation of its interactionwith the contemporary mediaand avant-garde; GeorgesDidi-Huberman, see survivante: Histoirede l'artet tempsdesfantOmes selonAby Warburg (Paris,2002). L'Image


Horst as / Bredekamp ArtHistory Bildwissenschaft

oneexample, which beenanalysed has Schoell-Glass: recently Charlotte by thelastplate scenes eucharistic of and sacraments, sacrifices, selfcompiles sacrifices theharakiri-sheet topofthemiddle like on The column.32 center ofthisstripe filled scenes theconcordat is of between Mussolini Pope and by PiusXIin July which witnessed Rome. contrasted in He the 1929, Warburg abandonment the Church's of over authority Romewiththebrutish apof thefascists a confident of thehighest in act order. pearance symbolic is of edition of Especially telling thepresentation a sheetof the29July theHamburger Fremdenblatt.image An shows popeduring procesthe the sion.Thisphotograph juxtaposed pictures a Japanese is with of a golfer, comof othergolfers, golfchampion, mayor, French a the a harbor group for a mission, rowing race,a students' convent, youngpeopledeparting of a and horses. craziness thismixThe swimmer, tworace England,famous in of in thathadtaken turewasa product a revolution thedaily press place in overtook textual the without cothetwenties Berlin. space any Images Illustrirte each like Zeitung herency, turning gazeintojournals theBerliner and event. images chosen fortheir The were less sense more intoa dadaistic
for theirformalaspects.33

did of Warburg not cutoutthephotograph thepopebut Significantly, thewhole, sheet. wanted finda senseevenin He to pinned up quilt crazy All as of whathe characterizeda "salad pictures" (Bildersalat). thescenes of fromthatof thepopeare"self-confident representationshuman apart
menschlicher excellencies" Vortrefflichkeit), (selbstzufriedene Schaustellungen and the sportsmenare "competing (wettstreitende Dynamiker) dynamics" The content"(zufriedene in a sphereof "mundane Diesseitigkeit). images an to constitute antagonistic in relation the popegivingup hisworldly pole reign.But althoughoccupyingthe most spacewithinthe image,the prothe cession is overlapped the swimmer,thus overshadowing "hocest by "hocmeum corpusest."The dimeum"throughhis ostentatious corpus lack Stiltensionthusturnsinto a "barbaric of style"(barbarischen alectical as as takesa seemingly banalphotograph seriously As Warburg losigkeit).34 he the a frescoby Raphael, represents essenceof arthistoryas Bildwissenwhichclaimedto investan unhindered energyin eventhe seemingly schaft, and marginal worthless.
on and Late 32. SeeCharlotte Schoell-Glass, Warburg's Comments Symbol Ritual," "Aby in no. Science Contextl2, 4 (1999): 621-42. "Die Ullstein: Jahre, 33. SeeKurt Illustrirte," Korff, Berliner 1927), 1877-1927 (Berlin, 5o
pp. 290-92.

34. Warburg, Warburg-Mnemosyne, Mnemosyne-Atlas, AusstellungAby Begleittextezur der Akademie bildenden 1993), 79,P.2. (Wien, pl. Kiinste

CriticalInquiry / Spring2003


4. Film and Bildwissenschaft lecturefrom1912 endedwiththe Schifanoja Warburg's groundbreaking confessionthathe had only beenableto performa "cinematographic proIt was apparently more than a captatiobenevolentiae.36 Franz jection."35
Wickhoff's analysis of Vienna Genesisfrom 1895had attempted alreadyto

Eisengaze projectthe cinematographic backinto the historyof art.Sergey as stein at leastsaw ViennaGenesis a paradigmatic studyof runningaction and as an essentialimpulsefor the trainingof his filmeyes.37 on of VictorSchamoni's arthistorical dissertation "thepossibilities 1926 whichhe didwithMartin in MOnster,38 the absolute defilm," Wackernagel of movevelopeda theoryof the filmby usingsimilarcategories ornament, whichhetransfers His termis rhythm, from ment,andsynaesthetics. central architectural structures film sequences. to Butnobodysawmorecinematographic thanPanofsky. was He rhythms a film maniac,and the only thing he objectedto on his firsttrip to New in was York 1931 that "thecinemasareextremely In lousy."39 a long review articleon Diirerin whichhe too judgedWikhoff'sViennaGenesis be a to he works"cinematsplit "cinematographic up,"40 sawin some of Dtirer's comographic" sequences.41And in a glowingletterfrom 1932Panofsky GretaGarboto Duirer; the silentmoviesshe haddeveloped style in a pared "whichrelatesto the regular of actingas graphics painting." limart to By an itingherselfto silentmoviesshehadestablished autonomous stylesimilar to Diirer'smastership copperplate in print. But when she talkedshe like acted, accordingto Panofsky, a watercolored etchingdone by Rembrandt.42 Thelettersoundsas if Panofsky his bookon Dtireralready mind, had in
35. "Kinematographisch scheinwerfern" Die der Antike, (Warburg, Erneuerung heidnischen 2:478). and 36. On Warburg "theimagein motion,"see Philippe-Alaid et Michaud,Aby Warburg (Paris,1998),p. 79. l'imageen mouvement 37. See SergeyEisenstein,TheFilmSense,trans.and ed. JayLeyda(1942; London,1986),p. 148; WernerHofmann,"Alleshangt mit allemzusammen," und Texte Eisenstein Deutschland: Dokumente ed. "Wiener Briefe, Akademieder Kiinste(Berlin,1998),p. 205;and KarlClausberg, Schule-Russischer Formalismus-Prager Strukturalismus: komparatistisches Ein Kapitel Idea Kunstwissenschaft," 2 (1983): 152,174. 38. SeeVictorSchamoni,"DasLichtspiel: des M6glichkeiten absolutenFilms"(Ph.D.diss., Munster,1926). 39. "Kinossind unterallemHund, woriber alle besserenMenschensehrunglticklich sind" letterto Dora Panofsky, Oct. 1931, 14 1:401). (Panofsky, Korrespondenz, 40. "'Kinematographisch "Albrecht zerlegende'Darstellungsverfahren" (Panofsky, Diirers Kunst," 1:400). rhythmische Deutschsprachige Aufsiatze, 41. "Durcheine Zerlegungdes Bewegungsablaufs mehrerekinematographisch in (ibid.;see also 1:402, n. 26). 403 aufeinanderfolgende Einzelphasen" 42. Panofsky, letterto Dora Panofsky, Jan.1932,Korrespondenz, 9 1:470.


HorstBredekamp/ Art Historyas Bildwissenschaft

whichhe published elevenyearslater. compared He with workshop Ditrer's WaltDisney's and the to atelier,43 he evenanalyzed portraits according cinto hisfriendSiegfried Kracauer "that ematographic categories,44 confirming we both learnedsomethingfrom the movies!"45 The same is true of the Codex in saw Leonardesque Huygens, whichPanofsky not onlythe "kinetic but and possibilities" alsothe "'cinematographic' representation" the preformationof "themoderncinema."46 5. "On Movies" "On was Panofsky's Movies" publishedwithinthe sametime frameas theseobservations.47 this essaywe touch on the unwritten With historyof
art history as Bildwissenschaftinthe U.S.

AlfredBarr,the young, newly designateddirectorof the Museumof ModernArt in New York, travelled the Netherlands, SovietUnion, to the andGermany, wherehe got strongly favorable of impressions the Bauhaus: "'A fabulousinstitution..., painting,graphic the arts,architecture, crafts, industrial theater, cinema,photography, typography, designfor massproin duction-all werestudiedandtaughttogether a largenewmodern buildThisexperience, is wellknown,becamethe modelof theMOMA as ing."'48 in andits foundingof the filmlibrary 1935,49 whichlaterwouldbe calledthe
43. See Panofsky, Lebenunddie Kunst Das Albrecht Munich,1977),PP.35-36. See Diirers(1943; also SiegfriedKracauer ErwinPanofsky, and ed. 1941-1966, VolkerBreidecker (Berlin, Briefwechsel, 1996),p. 204. 44. See Panofsky, Lebenunddie KunstAlbrecht Das p. Diirers, 281. 45. "Daskommt daher,dafiwir beide etwasvon den Moviesgelernthaben!"(Panofsky, letter to Kracauer, Dec. 1943,in Panofskyand Kracauer, 23 1941-1966, 27). Briefwechsel, p. 46. Panofsky,The"Codex da Art and (London,1940),pp. 24, Huygens" Leonardo Vinci's Theory 27,128;see also pp. 29 and 123. 47. IrvingLavin,"Panofskys des Humor,"in Panofsky,"Dieideologischen Vorlaufer Rolls-Royceund 1993),pp. 9-15;PP. 9-13 givesan inspired Kiihlers" "StilundMediumim Film"(Frankfurt, piece. "OnMovies"was the originaltitle of analysisof the new Americanstyleof Panofsky's on See Panofsky's "Styleand Mediumin the Motion Pictures." Panofsky,Three Essays Style,ed. Lavin(Cambridge, Humor"appearsin expanded Lavin's Mass.,1995),pp. 91-128; "Panofskys form as that collection'sintroduction. The 48. SamHunter,introduction,TheMuseumofModernArt,New York: Historyand the Collection (New York,1984),p. 11. in 49. Barrhimselfproposedas firstdirectorGustavHartlaub, headof the Kunsthalle who at the sametime had broughtthe avant-garde into Mannheim,a specialistin the Renaissance, the museum,who had createdthe term Neue Sachlichkeit, againstwhom the campaignof and and artwasdirectedfor the firsttime;see Kracauer Panofsky, 1941-1966, degenerate Briefwechsel, n. As the p. 211 531. Barrremembered, museumwas organizedin the firsttwo decadesaccordingto the model of the GermanKunstvereine. Kunstvereinewere The interestedin and open to all levels exhibitionson and aspectsof visualculture;alreadyin 1839a numberof them had arranged Zur zwischenKunstund Industrie': Geschichte see photography; UlrichPohlmann,"'Harmonie der im in der erstenPhotoausstellungen (1839-1868)," SilberundSalz:ZurFriihzeit Photographie deutschen 1839-186o (exhibitioncatalog,Josef-Haubrich-Kunsthalle, Cologne,9 JuneSprachraum 23July1989),p. 498.

CriticalInquiry / Spring200o3


Vatican film history.It was stronglysupportedby Panofsky. a letter of In his lecture"OnMovies" supportforMOMA's fromearly1936 declared he a film collection:films "areat leastas worthyof being collectedas pictures and books;I even becamea memberof the AdvisoryCommitteefor this whichhe continuedironically, film collection," "doesnot excludethaton in GivenPanofsky's enthua minorlevelI am stillinterested arthistory."50 film one siasmfor film and MOMA's library, understands in his film why art essayhe definedcinemaas the only relevant of modernity. wrotehis essay,Walter At almostexactlythe same time that Panofsky Work Artin theAgeof ItsTechnical of was "The Reproduction" Benjamin's in NewYork its French in as farasI know,has published Nobody, version.51 a evertouchedon this coincidencenor on the factthatJayLeyda, collaboratorof Eisenstein the new curatorof the MOMAfilmlibrary, and asked versionof Benjamin's so for the German article he couldpublishanEnglish of translation underthe auspices the filmlibrary. Horkheimer, by disgusted the article,hinderedthe plan in full panic, as did Adornoin 1938when also ur-text.52 MeyerShapiro askedfor the German Thereis no directevidenceknown,but it seemspossible,if not certain, text film thatPanofsky to knowBenjamin's throughtheMOMA library. got with the Warburg wantedto collaborate kneweachother;Benjamin They in reLibrary Hamburg,and, althoughhe could not succeed,Panofsky his maintained admiration Paof Benjamin spectedhis Trauerspiel-book.53 in he whenhe hadto defendhis articlein June1935 Paris, prepared nofsky; articleon perspective.54 himselfby rereading Panofsky's of The reception Benjamin's articlewasmoreor lessnonexistent before the sixties;its famecameas a politically correctanswerto McLuhan's Unin myview,wasPanofsky's Theonlysignificant reaction, derstandingMedia. in In editionof his "OnMovies" 1947. thistexthestrengthsecond,enlarged ened everything Benjamin denied.Eventhe sloganof the "magic that had which Panofsky put forward the Diirer in of the multiplying had arts,"55
50. "Ichbin sogarMitglieddes AdvisoryCommitteefir diese Film-Sammlung, abernicht was interessiere" ausschlieL8t, ich mich in maiiigemUmfangimmer noch ffirKunstgeschichte daft letterto Saxl,25Mar.1936,Korrespondenz, 1:893). (Panofsky, 51. SeeWalterBenjamin,"L'Oeuvre d'artAl'6poquede sa reproductionm&canis&e," trans. PierreKlossowski, no. Sozialforschung5, 1 (1936): Zeitschriftfiir 40-68. 52. See RolfTiedemanand HermannSchweppenhauser, der in "Anmerkungen Herausgeber," ed. am 7 Benjamin,Gesammelte Schriften, Tiedemanand Schweppenhauser, vols. in 14 (Frankfurt Main, 1972-1989), 1:3:1029, 1030. 12 53. See Hugo von Hofmannsthal,letterto Panofsky, Dec. 1927,Korrespondenz, see 1:246; also
Gerhard Scholem, letter to Saxl, 24 May1928, Korrespondenz, 1:276;Saxl, letter to Scholem, 17 June

and 1:286; Panofsky, letterto Saxl,Korrespondenz, 1928,Korrespondenz, 1:289. 54. See Tiedemanand Schweppenhauser, der and 1:3:105o "Anmerkungen Herausgeber," der Gesammelte 7:2:679. "Anmerkungen Herausgeber," Schriften, 55. Panofsky, Albrecht Diirer,2 vols. (Princeton,N.J.,1943),1:45.


HorstBredekamp/ Art Historyas Bildwissenschaft

to thesesaboutthe loss of aura book, canbe seen as an affront Benjamin's throughreproduction. both are united in the long-established Nevertheless media-historical to and approach arthistoryas Bildgeschichte thus agreethat film,like the visualartsbefore,has to do with questionsof life anddeath.Benjamin focuseson "shock,"56 of nominatesfouressential elements whereas Panofsky film as folkart:horror, moral."7 humor,and a clear-cut pornography, 6. Bildwissenschaft Visual Studies and Arthistoryas Bildwissenschaft, excluding low never seemingly artobjects from its field of research, been influentialfor ClaudeL&vi-Strauss's has structuralism PierreBourdieu's and habitustheory,to namejusttwo generalfieldsof study.58 courseit wasneverforgottenin arthistory; Of Giulio CarloArganspokein favorof art historians Bildhistoriker, as whichErnst Gombrich's work,reachingfrom studiesof Renaissance iconologyto Art in and Illusion, represented its full sense. But to come backto the problemmentionedat the beginningof this worldthereareof coursemanyart essay:althoughin the English-speaking historianslike David Freedberg who represent historyas Bildwissenart one hasthe impression Barbara Stafford James and that,forexample, schaft, Elkinsareperceived as regular historians more,but asheretical not art any but "visual and studysists"59 thatW. J.T. Mitchellis seen not as a builder, as a burnerof bridges.60 Thiskind of campthinkingis disastrous both for The separation of sides-and for arthistoryon both sidesof the Atlantic. visual studiesfrom art historyand the retreatof the more conservative membersof this discipline onto preciouslittleislandswouldput an end to
art history as Bildgeschichte. Seen through the lens of, say, 1930,the success

art of theturnto thevisualin ourepochseemsto dependon whether history toits its precisionof description, formaland contextual analysis projects or wardsall fieldsof historical Bildwissenschaft if it turnsitselfinto a splendid secondarchaeology.
"Das im 56. Benjamin, Kunstwerk Zeitalter seiner technischen (third Reproduzierbarkeit" Gesammelte n. version), 7:1:379 16. Schriften, in "'Ferne Nahe': und 57. SeeBreidecker, tradition,"' Kracauer, Panofsky, 'theWarburg Kracauer Panofsky, and 1941-1966,197. p. Briefwechsel, in the Arts: 58. SeeBredekamp, "Words, Ellipses," Meaningin Visual Views the Images, from A ed. Outside: Centennial Commemoration N.J., (1892-1968), Lavin (Princeton, ofErwin Panofsky 1995), 363-71. PP. works The Bulletin in Art 59. Compare Katerina Duskova's review several Elkins's of of 84 (Mar. 2002):188. of of studies a narrow as 60. Mitchell attacks false the encapsulationart.See originality visual in Visual A of W.J.T.Mitchell, Aethetics, Culture," ArtHistory, "Showing Seeing: Critique Visual Ann ed. and Mass., Studies, Michael Holly Keith (Williamstown, 2002), pp.231-50. Moxey