collage house

The differentiated “places” within collage house allow the stages of a developmental process to be localized, and correlate a sequence of physical movements in the house with a sequence of psychological transformations in the collage-maker (“chronogenic localization”).

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“… anything that grows has a ground plan, and … out of this ground plan the parts arise, each part having its time of special ascendency, until all parts have arisen to form a functioning whole.”

—Erik H. Erikson

Identity and the Life Cycle, 1959


“Bascially, the mental development of the child appears as a succession of three great periods. Each of these extends the preceding period, reconstructs it on a new level, and later surpasses it to an ever greater degree. This is true even of the first period, for the evolution of sensori-motor schemes extends and surpasses the evolution of the organic structures which takes place during embryogenesis. Semiotic relations, thought, and interpersonal connections internalize these schemes of action by reconstructing them on the new level of representation, and surpass them until all the concrete operations and cooperative structures have been established. Finally, after the age of eleven or twelve, nascent formal thought restructures the concrete operations by subordinating them to new structures whose development will continue throughout adolescence and all of later life (along with many other trasformations as well)…

Each new mental structure, by integrating the preceding ones, succeeds both in partly liberating the individual from his past and in inaugurating new activities which at the formal operatory level are mainly oriented toward the future…”

—J. Piaget and B. Inhelder

The Psychology of the Child, 1969


“There are a few further points which we ought to note. In the first place, we must remember that we live our childhood as our future. Our childhood determines gestures and roles in the perspective of what is to come. This is not a question of the mechanical reappearance of montages… The gestures and roles are inseparable from the project which transforms them… For this reason a life develops in spirals; it passes again and again by the same points but at different levels of integration and complexity.”

—J.-P. Sartre
“The Progressive-Regressive Method,” Search for a Method, 1960/63



“This is what Piaget calls the ‘developmental lag’ [décalage]; i.e., all that is acquired at a certain level must be started over again at a higher level.… Far from being limited to the first years, language acquisition is coextensive with the very exercise of language.”

—Maurice Merleau-Ponty
Consciousness and the Acquisition of Language, 1964


“The subject exists because, to put it very briefly, the being of structures consists in their coming to be, that is, their being ‘under construction,’ ”

—Jean Piaget
Structuralism, 1968


“First images . . . arise in the spirit. Then words, applied to images. Finally, concepts, possible only when there are words — the collecting together of many images in something nonvisible but audible (word). The tiny amount of emotion to which the ‘word’ gives rise, as we contemplate similar images for which one word exists — this weak emotion is the common element, the basis of the concept.”

—F. Nietzsche
“Principles of a New Evaluation,”
The Will to Power, 1884/1901

“Everything begins with the image.”

—Kenneth Boulding

The Image


“Only images can set the verbs in motion again.”

—Gaston Bachelard

The Poetics of Space, 1958


“Now, there is an intermediary between images and concepts, namely signs… If ideas are not yet present, signs can keep their future place open for them… For signs can always be defined in the way introduced by Saussure in the case of the particular category of linguistic signs, that is, as a link between images and concepts. In the union thus brought about, images and concepts play the part of the signifying and the signified respectively.”

—Claude Lévi-Strauss

“The Science of the Concrete”
The Savage Mind, 1962/66


“When…a certain picture [Bild] turns up in many such series, then — precisely through such return — it becomes an ordering element for such series, in that it connects series which in themselves are unconnected. Such an element becomes an instrument, a concept.… All our thinking is of this nature of a free play with concepts.”

—Albert Einstein

“Autobiographical Notes,” 1941


“Time is the new dimension which verbalizing and its mental consequence, symbolic thinking, have imposed on the human ambient, making it a world, with a homogeneous spatial frame and a history.”

—Susanne Langer

Mind: An Essay on Human Feeling, Vol. II, 1972


Two questions to start. One: assuming one wished to materialize — to physicalize — the psychoformative process, or wished to materialize a model of that process, how would one do it? Two: dropping back quickly to question the assumption of such a wish, why would one attempt such a materialization?


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