In reading Chapter 6, the application of deformance, as well as a strengthening of McGann’s argument of the visibility of the text, is absolutely apparent.  Deformance, in the visual sense, is a reinterpretation of an aesthetic object through manipulation by means of artistic mediums such as computers, change in materials, changes in shape, etc.  In textual terms, as we discussed in class, deformance can be as simple as reorganizing a poem.  In all cases of deformance, this process is employed in order to see what can be taken or drawn from it in the object/text’s altered state.  If a photograph or a poem holds up to this type of manipulation and you can get value from the deformance, then the new meaning is worth considering.

McGann states in regards to Rossetti’s portraits, that they

…are dominated by patterns of interlocking vortices and spirals…[a] key structural feature of Rossetti’s pictorial work [that] has not been previously noticed or commented upon.  It is a feature that leaps into prominence when these random deformations are passed through the pictures (174).

McGann’s statement clarifies that not only has our interpretation of the art work changed due to the manipulation, but it has also altered our perception of the piece.  An example of how this theory can be applied is when viewing the American Express commercial, “Don’t Take Chances.  Take Charge,”

or the Audi A4, “Faces,” commercial.

The deformance intended is to present to the audience everyday objects, and through cinematic manipulation (context as well possibly?) the viewer is offered a new perception and interpretation.

McGann’s inclusion of Horne’s argument that he,

…sees visual language when he sees wordtext combined with shapes or wordtext combined with images or wordtext combined with both together (198),

is pertinent to the electronic embodiment of digitized texts.  The representation of texts within a database are limited to the shapes that markup is capable of producing.  He continues on to say that,

…shape is ever present.  Graphically transmitted texts, by elementary ‘laws of form,’ automatically generate…shape…So far as our common (visual) language is concerned, then, the elementary marks are an alphabet of letters, plus an accompanying set of signs…for reorganizing the letter marks into different scales and sets of relations (198).

An example of how letter shape, size, and color can be deformed to create an image subsequently different than the connotation that the letters carry, is this digitally produced image of the Statue of Liberty only alphabetic letters.

While the combinations of these letters may not produce any words that are significant to literal meaning, the new meaning formed by the deformance of the piece is an image.

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