The Flickering of Reality and the Distillation of Meaning. The Strategies of Authentic Existence in Postmodernity

Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis


  • Viktorija Damerell Vilnius Academy of Arts, Vilnius, Lithuania



flickering of reality, poststructuralism, irony, nostalgia, David Bohm, distillation of meaning


By this text I question if authentic existence is possible in the presence of a crisis of the real. I also inquire whether the poststructural thought could be compatible with the ideas of deeper realms and transcendence. I discuss the possibility of existence that cannot be grasped by the human mind, as presented in the theories of Roger Scruton and David Bohm. I also criticise the poststructural way of thinking as incapable to oppose the dominant structures. I introduce the term the distillation of meaning to describe a situation when a cultural sign is not used in a way that is defined by a system and provokes the user to ascribe totally different meanings and feelings to it. In response to the belief that existence is becoming less and less authentic, I discuss how the theoretical perspective of implicate and explicate orders proposed by Bohm allows us to articulate the relation between an individual and reality outside of qualitative categories such as progress or regress. Based on this, I make a conclusion that the same element of reality can exist as much on the plane of rationality as on the plane of flow. In an attempt to name this phenomenon, I introduce the term the flickering of reality.

Author Biography

Viktorija Damerell, Vilnius Academy of Arts, Vilnius, Lithuania

Viktorija Damerell is an artist working mainly in the fields of sound, sculpture and text. In 2017, she graduated from the Vilnius Academy of Arts with an MA in Contemporary Sculpture. Since 2009, she has been active on the contemporary art scene as an artist and curator. Currently she has been involved in performative activity as part of the duo “Eye Gymnastics”.

More on her artistic practice:

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How to Cite

Damerell, V. (2021). The Flickering of Reality and the Distillation of Meaning. The Strategies of Authentic Existence in Postmodernity: Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis. Acta Academiae Artium Vilnensis, (99), 281–308.