27 September 2023
Immersive Rhythms, Dismersive Images: On Music Video’s Affective Atmosphere

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21 December 2023
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2023/24 /ɪˈməːʃən/
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research: Seminar

2022/23 Multisensoriality
104

Immersive Rhythms, Dismersive Images: On Music Video’s Affective Atmosphere

Tomáš Jirsa

Opening up a dialogue between music video scholarship and affect theory, this seminar will make a case for grounding the concept of atmosphere in the affective agency and movement of audiovisual forms, their spatial arrangement, and musical composition, which oscillate between immersion and its deformative yet generative counterpart—“dismersion.” Drawing on Eugenie Brinkema’s affective formalism and recent theorizations of aesthetic atmospheres, we will analyze the mutual transformations between alienating space, desubjectifying bodies, and immersive rhythms in two music videos, the electronic producer Jlin’s “Carbon 7” (dir. Joji Koyama, 2017) and the rapper Earl Sweatshirt’s “Grief” (dir. Hiro Murai, 2015) to propose a shift from the prevailingly vague notion of atmosphere as an overall mood and subjective experience of absorption to the performative interactions between moving images, music, and sounds driven by specific affective operations. In order to explain how music videos generate specific atmospheres and what aesthetic and conceptual roles their “dismersions” play in the videos’ composition, style, and interaction with the viewer, we will first discuss the absence of the term atmosphere in music video studies, including its frequent conflation with a different concept of mood and feeling. The critique will then join several contemporary voices of affect theory and philosophy, especially Gernot Böhme (2017) and Jan Slaby (2020), whose focus on spatiality and non-subjective mediality of the atmosphere allows to better understand the affective structure of music videos’ space and rhythmic movement. Finally, these concepts will be engaged in formal reading of both videos that demonstrate how particular affective operations drive the audiovisual atmosphere which in turn reshapes both their visual and sonic structure.

Biography

Tomáš Jirsa

Tomáš Jirsa is Associate Professor of Literary Studies at Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia, where he directs the PhD Program in Film, Television, and Theater Studies. Interested in music video studies, affect theory, and media philosophy, his recent publications include Disformations: Affects, Media, Literature (Bloomsbury, 2021); Traveling Music Videos (Bloomsbury, 2023), co-edited with Mathias Korsgaard; Reconfiguring the Portrait (Edinburgh University Press, 2023), co-edited with Abraham Geil; and How to Do Things with Affects (Brill, 2019), co-edited with Ernst van Alphen. His articles can be found in journals such as Music, Sound, and the Moving Image; Zeitschrift für Medien- und Kulturforschung; Central Europe; and Iluminace. In 2015 and 2017, he was awarded a junior fellowship from The International Research Institute for Cultural Techniques and Media Philosophy (IKKM) at Bauhaus University, Weimar; in 2019, he was Visiting Scholar at the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA).

research: seminar

Immersive Rhythms, Dismersive Images: On Music Video’s Affective Atmosphere

Tomáš Jirsa

Opening up a dialogue between music video scholarship and affect theory, this seminar will make a case for grounding the concept of atmosphere in the affective agency and movement of audiovisual forms, their spatial arrangement, and musical composition, which oscillate between immersion and its deformative yet generative counterpart—“dismersion.” Drawing on Eugenie Brinkema’s affective formalism and recent theorizations of aesthetic atmospheres, we will analyze the mutual transformations between alienating space, desubjectifying bodies, and immersive rhythms in two music videos, the electronic producer Jlin’s “Carbon 7” (dir. Joji Koyama, 2017) and the rapper Earl Sweatshirt’s “Grief” (dir. Hiro Murai, 2015) to propose a shift from the prevailingly vague notion of atmosphere as an overall mood and subjective experience of absorption to the performative interactions between moving images, music, and sounds driven by specific affective operations. In order to explain how music videos generate specific atmospheres and what aesthetic and conceptual roles their “dismersions” play in the videos’ composition, style, and interaction with the viewer, we will first discuss the absence of the term atmosphere in music video studies, including its frequent conflation with a different concept of mood and feeling. The critique will then join several contemporary voices of affect theory and philosophy, especially Gernot Böhme (2017) and Jan Slaby (2020), whose focus on spatiality and non-subjective mediality of the atmosphere allows to better understand the affective structure of music videos’ space and rhythmic movement. Finally, these concepts will be engaged in formal reading of both videos that demonstrate how particular affective operations drive the audiovisual atmosphere which in turn reshapes both their visual and sonic structure.

27 September 2023
18:00
19:30

Sala Malliani

Via Festa del Perdono, 7

Immersive Rhythms, Dismersive Images: On Music Video’s Affective Atmosphere
Tomáš Jirsa
Sala Malliani
Via Festa del Perdono, 7
20230927
18:00
19:30