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Do You See what I See? Iconic Art and Culture and the Judicial Eye in Australian Law

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Abstract


  • Law, as a practice, makes the claim that it deals in clear, verifiable and ascertainable facts and knowledge, eschewing the insensible, or what can only be ‘felt’ or ‘sensed’. And this is the rub; what happens when the courts make decisions about visuals and images? What exactly do they see?

    My purpose in this chapter is to explore how Australian courts, in a diverse set of circumstances, have ‘seen’ visuals or images, such as art or other cultural and creative outputs, and to propose a corrective to their empiricist reading of them, through the use of a Panofskian iconological schema. As in other jurisdictions, Australian courts have engaged in decision-making about matters typically relevant to images and visuals in disputes over copyright law, commercial transactions, blasphemy and taxation law. But for the purposes of this chapter, I explore how Australian judges ‘see’ visuals and images in areas of law concerned with, or draw upon, uniquely Australian experiences: in broadcasting law, cultural heritage law, and the trust establishing a famous annual portraiture prize featuring Australians – the Archibald Prize.

Publication Date


  • 2013

Citation


  • M. Leiboff, 'Do You See what I See? Iconic Art and Culture and the Judicial Eye in Australian Law' in A. Wagner & R. K. Sherwin(ed), Law, Culture and Visual Studies (2013) 363-392.

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9789048193226

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84955653779

Ro Full-text Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1795&context=lhapapers

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/790

Book Title


  • Law, Culture and Visual Studies

Start Page


  • 363

End Page


  • 392

Place Of Publication


  • Dordrecht, Netherlands

Abstract


  • Law, as a practice, makes the claim that it deals in clear, verifiable and ascertainable facts and knowledge, eschewing the insensible, or what can only be ‘felt’ or ‘sensed’. And this is the rub; what happens when the courts make decisions about visuals and images? What exactly do they see?

    My purpose in this chapter is to explore how Australian courts, in a diverse set of circumstances, have ‘seen’ visuals or images, such as art or other cultural and creative outputs, and to propose a corrective to their empiricist reading of them, through the use of a Panofskian iconological schema. As in other jurisdictions, Australian courts have engaged in decision-making about matters typically relevant to images and visuals in disputes over copyright law, commercial transactions, blasphemy and taxation law. But for the purposes of this chapter, I explore how Australian judges ‘see’ visuals and images in areas of law concerned with, or draw upon, uniquely Australian experiences: in broadcasting law, cultural heritage law, and the trust establishing a famous annual portraiture prize featuring Australians – the Archibald Prize.

Publication Date


  • 2013

Citation


  • M. Leiboff, 'Do You See what I See? Iconic Art and Culture and the Judicial Eye in Australian Law' in A. Wagner & R. K. Sherwin(ed), Law, Culture and Visual Studies (2013) 363-392.

International Standard Book Number (isbn) 13


  • 9789048193226

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-84955653779

Ro Full-text Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1795&context=lhapapers

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/lhapapers/790

Book Title


  • Law, Culture and Visual Studies

Start Page


  • 363

End Page


  • 392

Place Of Publication


  • Dordrecht, Netherlands