Visual Competence for the Digital Age

The Center for Image Science (ZBW) studies the global image revolution triggered by new media, and its impact on our culture. The image, as a storehouse of knowledge and a communication instrument, demands professional treatment in almost all disciplines. People who work with images today are experts in analyzing complex cultural, scientific, economic and political images and understand how to digitally collect and archive these, as well as how to convey them to the public in an exhibition context.

The Center for Image Science is an institution unique worldwide for research and innovative teaching in connection with almost all types of images, and at the same time currently the only place of study in the German-speaking countries dedicated to this task. The Center takes an interdisciplinary approach to research and teaching that particularly heeds the connection between theory and practice, and delivers answers to today’s all-pervading image revolution in every area of our society and culture.

In addition to the quantitative increase of visual media, the visual sciences investigate the qualitative peculiarities of the pictorial in the production, distribution and reception of knowledge. Images do not only reveal themselves to humans as a logical problem of language, they also simultaneously and directly affect perception and emotion. Recognition and remembrance follow their own dynamics – hence images say more than a thousand words.

The image sciences provide orientation necessary for the challenges of the current media and image revolution. They address transdisciplinary questions from art and cultural studies, social, media technology and practical contexts. In the discourse on the independent capacity of images to generate, reflect and promote knowledge, the visual sciences are concerned with objective and subjective images, the perceptible material images through to the inner mental images.

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