Martor No. 20 / Year 2015
Author: Oana Mateescu
About the author:
Lecturer at the Faculty of Sociology, University of Bucharest
E-mail: oana.maria.mateescu at gmail dot com
Keywords: ectoplasm photography, indexicality, body, medium, psychical science
This essay discusses the experiments carried out between 1909-1913 by German psychologist and psychical researcher Albert von Schrenck-Notzing on the phenomena of materialization, involving the biological shapes and images excreted by the body of a female subject (in this case, Eva Carrière) who acted, at the same time, as a spiritual and technological medium. It underlines the indexicality of visual and tactile evidence as it is graphically and photographically recorded by the scientist. In the psychic laboratory, science is deeply anchored in the physiol- ogy of the female body, embracing animism and vitalism as a philosophy of life, while also veering close to eroticism as a somatic mode of knowledge.