To native English speaker writes a complicated text,

To understand this structure in relation to
Roni Horn’s artworks, we can look at the example of the point of convergence
when a viewer comes to see one of Horn’s images of the Thames.

T= The text would be the Horn’s images of the
Thames. This is the fixed object of which the author has created, and the
reader will experience.

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A= The author would be Roni Horn, she is the
creator of the text (i.e. the images).

R= The reader would be the viewer who
approaches the artwork. Lecercle refers to both the author and the reader as
EGO’s (Lecercle, 1999).

L= When referring to a written piece of text, this
is the language that either of the EGO’s are familiar with and their
understanding of it. Due to linguistic complexities, this understanding be
slightly different for either the author or the reader. For example, if a
native English speaker writes a complicated text, and a non- native English
speaker comes to read the text, they may struggle to receive all of the
information of which the author intended to convey. In Horn’s artworks, the
language that she chooses to portray her thinking is through image and
subsequent text in her use of footnotes. Her use of image is more universal
than her use of text, and almost anyone who comes across the artwork will be
able to digest the language of the image. However, through her use of text in
the footnotes, the same example of the native and non-native English speaker
applies. Therefore, the language has an effect on how the author intends the
text, and how the reader ingests it.

E= The encyclopaedia is the knowledge that a
person has adopted since birth. This is the EGO’s personal bank of past
experiences. This, along with language, is what causes the variation between
individuals that Iser writes about. Lecercle argues that whenever an EGO
happens upon a text they do not have a complete and pure view of it because
their interpretation is ‘filtered through a systematic pattern of knowledge and
beliefs’ (Lecercle, 1999, p. 42). He further explains this through Karl Marx’s
‘Grundisse’ and uses the example of the art of painting to exemplify a fragment
of an individual’s encyclopaedia.

The art of painting is described as ‘both the
product and the cause of our sense of vision, even the shape of our hands acts
as both the cause and product of our practice of working’ (Lecerlce, 1999,
p.42). Lecercle recognises that we are so unique that the shape and motional
ability of our hands are significant factors in the way that we paint and vice
versa. This is just one example of a multiplicity of factors that contribute to
an individual’s encyclopaedia. Every single occurrence or experience adds to
one’s encyclopaedia. This demonstrates a non-separation between the past and
present, and the two inevitably impact one another. Bergson’s comparison to
time by imagining two spools with tape between them allows us to understand how
time moves between the past and present. One of the spools constantly unwinds
the tape while the other winds it back up (Bergson, 1946, p146). Here, we
witness one moment adding to the preceding ones consistently, it visualises how
the present and past conjoin, and how one’s encyclopaedia develops.

When we relate this to the moment of
convergence between Horn, the artwork, and the viewer, it is understood that
Horn has brought her own encyclopaedia to the work. One way in which she does
this is through the image of the Thames. Although Horn and the viewer will see
exactly the same image, their individual and unique past will result in either
of the EGO’s connecting the image to different information within their
encyclopaedia. For example, Horn may relate the image to her experience of
being at the Thames taking the photograph. However, it would be impossible for
the viewer to make this same connection because they did not capture the image.
Through the use of footnotes, Horn recognises her own encyclopaedia, and she
relates each segment of the Thames to a bank of references from her own
collection of information acquired through past experiences. When the viewer
comes to the footnotes, they will do the same as they did with the image. They
might find similarities between Horn’s encyclopaedia and their own, but it will
be understood that their encyclopaedia cannot be exactly the same as another’s
because it is so unique. Bergson recognises that ‘two bodies cannot occupy the
same space at the same time’ (Bergson, 1910, p.88) and even if two individuals
were to have lived through what seemed to be the same experiences, they would
actually be slightly different because they would either have to occupy
slightly different space of time, and one’s encyclopaedia is so complex that
even this slightness would impact the reading of the work.

Looking at figures 8 and 9, we see that the
‘text is the centre of the structure, and the most important actant’ (Lecercle,
1999, p.75). It is also acknowledged that the ‘author and reader are effects of
the text’ (Lecercle, 1999, p.75) as is specified by the outward pointing arrows.
It is further noted that there is ‘no direct relationship between the reader
and text, and text and author: they are filtered (the square brackets indicate
this) by language and encyclopaedia which have pride of place over author and
reader’ (Lecercle, 1999, p.75). This suggests that either of the EGO’s cannot
ingest the text without their language or encyclopaedia affecting their
interpretation of the it. Therefore, the EGO’s past evidently affects their
present, it collides and fuses, and there is no way to stop this from

In ‘Constructions’ (1998), Rajchman explores
the idea of the virtual and the actual. The virtual is what rests in the past,
it the complex and intricately weaved system of what has already happened. The
actual is a manifestation of the virtual, it is the present that has occurred
through the richness of the past1.  If we consider one’s encyclopaedia to be the
virtual and present consciousness to be the actual, it can assist us in
understanding the richness of an individual’s personal bank of experience, and
the complexity of how past and present consciousness meet in such a way so that
they refuse to be separated. Rajchman quotes Bergson on the virtual, describing
it as ‘a force of the past that is always still with us in the
present…unfolding in our lives beyond what we are able to recollect or recognise’
(Rajchman, 1998, p.116).

The virtual ‘lies in…forces or potentials
whose origins and outcomes cannot be specified independently’ (Rajchman, 1998,
p.116). and is so multifaceted that it can ‘never be reduced to a set of
discrete elements, or to different parts of a closed or organic whole’ (Rajchman,
1998, p.116). The virtual ‘thinks in terms of arrangements of body and soul,
irreducible to any such symbolic order, any such law of possibilities’ (Rajchman,1998,
p.120). It develops in a non-linear structure that exposes why we must consider
time to be an ineffable heterogeneity. Consciousness cannot be separated and
put into distinct units, and it travels side by side with time, each moment
building and permeating another, gradually gaining richness.

The fact that time is in a constant state of change does
not just mean that it is immeasurable because it is so fleeting that as we
attempt to capture a moment it has already passed. But it changes in a way that
one moment is constantly blending into another and we are not able find an
exact separation between these moments, which is necessary for accurate
unitisation and measurement. Both Bergson’s example of the colour spectrum, and
Beckett’s ‘Ping’, assist us in understanding this converging and blending. One
moment cannot be separated from the next because it is in a constant process of
blending to another (see figure 7). 
Furthermore, Horn’s use of footnotes overtly acknowledge that the work
represents a moment of time where the past and present inevitably collide. When
we compare this to Iser and Lecercle’s idea of the interpretation of a text, we
can see that the past is always carried in the present, and the two cannot be
considered separately. The encyclopaedia part of Lecercle’s ALTER structure,
compared with Rajchman’s ideas on the virtual both help us to see that our
conscience, which travels side by side with time, is too rich and complex to
begin to accurately separate or unitise. This inability to separate results in
immeasurability because science and mathematics both require this.










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