Xiaoxi Shan


Media ontology is the theory that explains being from the perspective of media. The media in the form of material substance is the media being; and the “media being” is the way of “coming forth to be”, in which media beings present such “non-beings” as intermediating, gathering, revealing, unconcealing/concealing, etc. The Heideggerian ontology is in essence media ontology, which reaches the truth of existence through a certain media being; that is, “media-being” is its basic mode of thinking. The core of Heidegger’s theory can be summarized as “being is media.” In other words, the world of being comes forth simply in the form of mediatization. The existential construction of Dasein is also the mediated operation of Dasein, which yields the “ready-to-hand” equipment and promotes the interconnection of all things or the mediatization of the world. The language medium names and reveals all things through Dasein’s “speaking” or “saying” by itself, so that things, human beings and the world all return to the self, and being appears. The thing media that is free from the control of language “gathers” the heaven, the earth, gods and human beings, “thing things”, “world worlds”, summoning being itself as the “intimate difference.” This technology, which is originally the poetic unconcealment, enters the modern era as a “framework” and comes forth to unconceal via challenging, setting up, gathering, and ordering nature and reality as well as “dispensing” people. Eventually, it becomes the dangerous concealment. According to media ontology, artworks are media beings; that is, art itself is the mediatized existence of artworks. The (coming forth to) being of artworks means constructing a world and the earth in a mediatizing way to further induce “intimate conflict,” showing the explicit-implicit operation of being. Art’s essence of being is then realized when truth is unconcealed. In this way, “being is media” is embodied as “art is media.” This is precisely the poetic effect of media ontology.


media ontology; media being; being is media; art is media

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