by Jeremy Fernando

… one is photographable, ‘photogenic’,
and this is perhaps the catastrophe,
that one can be photographable,
that one can be captured
and caught in time …

— Hubertus von Amelunxen

… the tragedy of the photographic object, the object that is photographed: that in order to preserve its writing — the writing of light — the object has to be consigned into the shadows of time.

Perhaps then, the only hope for the one being captured is to be photographed without being photographable: not so much that one is not in the photograph (that would be too simple), nor that one is the photographer (too banal), nor even that one attempts to resist being objectified (for, this would be impossible); but that one remains within the photograph … as light.

Where one is nothing other than light writing itself.

Which is not to say that that just because it is light, it leaves no marks: for, no matter how light it might be, might try to be, there is always already weight, a trace. And, this perhaps is precisely why it is the unbearable lightness of being: not because one has to try hard to weigh it down, give it gravitas, meaning even, but that no matter how light it is, regardless of the very abgrund of being, it is always already too heavy, never light enough.

Unless, it is light writing light.

And what remains is not just nothing — in the sense of light writing over itself — but nothingness: pure shining.

Perhaps completely naïve

… but, I’m an absolute beginner;
with nothing much at stake. [1]

espoir, Jeremy Fernando, 2016

You’d need to be standing at where you took the photo,
in order for you to be sitting on that chair
and staring at yourself.
Pure vanity.

— Yanyun Chen

But perhaps not so much I keep one eye on the mirror to watch myself go by — but rather, I am a mirror.

Where light writing light reflects — nothing but itself.
A photography by one who is simple, just born (naïf);
quite possibly an artless (naïve) photography:
where …

… the whole art
is to know how to disappear before dying,
and instead of dying.

— Jean Baudrillard



[1] This piece is dedicated to the memory of — to the art that is — David Bowie.

About the Author:


Jeremy Fernando is the Jean Baudrillard Fellow at The European Graduate School. He works in the intersections of literature, philosophy, and the media; and is the author of Reflections on (T)errorThe Suicide Bomber; and her gift of deathReading Blindly and Writing Death. Exploring other media has led him to film, music, and art; and his work has been exhibited in Seoul, Vienna, Hong Kong and Singapore. He is the general editor of both Delere Press, and the thematic magazine One Imperative; and a Fellow of Tembusu College at the National University of Singapore.