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Peter Mahr

Peter Mahr is Privatdozent for philosophical aesthetics at the University of Vienna, Austria, since 2006. He is a researcher in aesthetics, philosophy of media and history of philosophy. Since 1986, he is lecturing for universities in Vienna, Linz, Innsbruck and Weimar where he was visiting professor in 2010/11. His books include Philosophie von Bacon bis Freud (2015); Immanuel Kant, Kritik der Urteilskraft (2009, co-editor of online edition); Einführung in die Kunstphilosophie. Das Ästhetische und seine Objekte (2003); Österreichische Ästhetik. 19 Interviews von Peter Mahr (2003, editor); Erinnerung an Moritz Schlick. Ausstellungen und Ausstellungskatalog anläßlich des 60. Todestages (1996). From 1998 until 2008 he curated the website mahr’svierteljahrsschriftfürästhetik, a quarterly for aesthetics for which he wrote all of the 12 articles in average per number (until 2001) exclusively himself (see table of contents http://homepage.univie.ac.at/peter.mahr/vista_mvae_1998-2008.html).

Articles of Peter Mahr

"Für eine Phänomenologie des Fernsehens" III: Nam June Paik und eine künstlerische Phänomenologie

When Vilém Flusser arrived at the conference held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in January 1974 he did not know that an artist was responsible both for the conception and the title of the meeting. Flusser aspired to develop his media theory differently and in front of a completely different philosophical background as McLuhan. Nam June Paik, at that time in his zenith, most likely influenced Flusser philosophically as well as in terms of art examples and much more than Flusser was ready to admit in his short reference to one of Paik’s early non-electronic pre-video films. It is a bit strange that Flusser shied away from the confrontation with art in and with television. It is all the more important to determine the theoretical space that Nam June Paik must have opened to Flusser and others. Against this background it becomes clear that Flusser was able to approach the heritage of phenomenology in a more open und artistic, that is, in a more literary and essayistic way.

"Für eine Phänomenologie des Fernsehens" II: das Schicksal eines Texts und der Wechsel zur Fotografie

Although Vilém Flusser’s text „Für eine Phänomenologie des Fernsehens“ is only 21 pages long there is no other text in his oeuvre that shows the same concern  for philosophical and methodological reflection. A first, incompletely elaborated version for the New York symposium in January 1974 was published with a four years delay. However, the definitive version Flusser provided has not been published. A new object of research is superimposed onto the unlucky old enterprise of a theory of television.

"Für eine Phänomenologie des Fernsehens" I: Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre, Immanuel Kant und Günther Anders

Although Flusser does not explain and develop his philosophical and methodological claims on the first three pages of his mini treatise „Für eine Phänomenologie des Fernsehens“ (1997 <1974>), there is enough evidence for Flusser’s fundamentally phenomenological credo. The philosophers of Flusser’s implicit references can be unmistakably detected: Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Paul Sartre, Immanuel Kant and Günther Anders. On the one hand, Flusser appears to be strongly rooted in the phenomenological tradition. On the other, in a text on Husserl’s (late) philosophy written in 1986/87, Flusser reveals that he had changed his mind in the meantime turning to a sociology of media that dispenses with the phenomenological stance that was the main aim of his thinking on media in the 1970ies.

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