portrait Nicastro

Clio Nicastro

Fellow 16-18, Affiliated 15-16

Philosophy / Film Theory

ICI Berlin
Christinenstraße 18-19, Haus 8
D-10119 Berlin


Clio Nicastro received her Ph.D. in Aesthetics and Theory of Arts from the University of Palermo and has been a visiting student in the Institute of Art and Visual History at the Humboldt University of Berlin, where she has worked on Aby Warburg (forthcoming with Aesthetica Preprint). After her Ph.M. in Philosophy at the University of Palermo she gained a Level II Master’s degree in Sociology at the Roma Tre University. In 2015 she moved to Berlin as a DAAD postdoctoral fellow (Research Grant for Young Academics and Scientists). She has presented papers at several international conferences, including at La semaine Rancière at the University of Calabria and the International Symposium of the Swiss Philosophical Society. She has been part of the editorial board of the film studies journal Fata Morgana. Quadrimestrale di cinema e visioni since 2010 and has contributed articles on Michael Haneke, Agnès Varda, Ingmar Bergman, and Apichatpong Weerasethakul. She also collaborates with the online journal Filmidee.

Harun Farocki: The Invisible World of Work

Harun Farocki: The Invisible World of Work is a theoretical investigation of “labour” as a subject in Farocki’s texts and filmography. This project consists of a detailed analysis of "Eine Einstellung zur Arbeit / Labour in a single shot" (one of his and Antje Ehmann's last projects), but will also include Italian translations of selected texts by Farocki addressing this subject. This research will be compiled and published with a critical introduction presenting the main aspects of Farocki's interest in the function of labour in today’s society.

In addition, Clio Nicastro intends to research the notion of 'distance' understood as a methodological approach, which has been a recurrent subject in all of her research, but once applied to a selection of Farocki's works, will reveal his use of the 'long shot' and what he termed soft montage to be of both technical and symbolic significance.

ICI Project (2016-18)

Sensing the Other: Empathic Temporalities in Aby Warburg and Donna Haraway

Over the last decades, the word “Empathy” has become more and more controversial and compelling since a range of different transdisciplinary approaches are available and there is no consensus regarding its meaning. Being empathic is today almost a social duty, amplified by the possibilities enabled by new media in terms of getting directly in contact with stories and experiences of distant people simultaneously and around the clock. The general trend is arguably that of focusing on the fusional relation between subject and object, without taking into account the distance and conflict implicit in sensing the other.
Through the comparison of two models of nonlinear temporal interaction, Donna Harawayʼs diffraction and Aby Warburgʼs dynamogram, this project aims to explore alternative forms of empathy accounting for the interaction with both the organic and the inorganic world. This means overcoming the presumption that one is able to sense the other through a projection mechanism, supposedly cancelling out the complexity and diversity of lived experiences, which reduces people, animals and objects to mean to fulfill a temporary desire here and now.
Filmmakers such as Harun Farocki and Philipp Scheffner offer challenging and emblematic cinematic devices to explore other kinds of empathic relation with the spectator, focusing on an erratic temporality that avoids frantic actions and takes position against the idea of one, unique, right image to represent reality. Analyzing these cinematic approaches, which question the polarity emotions/distance, is a way to point out the risky yet vital practice of dismantling and redefining the borders between subject and object.

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