The terms Blick (look), Fleck (spot), Schirm (screen) play a central role in Lacan’s thinking on the problem of seeing and being seen. Drawing from Caillois, Merleau-Ponty, and Sartre, Lacan dwelled extensively on these topics in a 1964 seminar; nine years later the text of the seminar appeared under the title Les quatre concepts fondamentaux de la psychanalyse. This has since become one of Lacan’s best known works. What is not so well known is that a painting acquired by Lacan in 1955 seems to have been predestined to provoke an analysis of the subject’s entanglement in the complex structures of the visual. The talk reads the painting as a paradigmatic example of Lacan’s visual theory.
Initially an educator at a Berlin secondary school, Karlheinz Lüdeking went on to study philosophy, art history, and German literature, earning his PhD in philosophy under the supervision of Ernst Tugendhat in 1985. After several temporary appointments, he received a tenured professorship in art history at the Art Academy of Nuremberg, where he also served as president from 1998 until 2001. In 2002 he spent half a year at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. In 2004 he moved to Berlin, where he has since taught art history and theory at the University of the Arts, focusing on art and art theory from 1900 to the present. He is the author of Grenzen des Sichtbaren (2006) and the co-editor of Clement Greenberg: Die Essenz der Moderne / Ausgewählte Essays und Kritiken (1997; expanded new edition, 2009) and Analytische Philosophie der Kunst (1988; expanded new edition, 1998). In 1997, he cofounded the German Society of Aesthetics.