The paper contributes to the debate regarding the incompleteness of accounting representations and performance measures by highlighting the role that such incompleteness plays by prompting and sustaining a continuous search for perfection which, however, is never achieved. Thanks to the information collected thorough a longitudinal case study of an Italian mid-size fashion firm, we illustrate how accounting visualizations offer a visual space that generates productive tensions that sustain this process of scrutiny, questioning and continual search. Theoretically, we draw on the notion of epistemic objects combined with the findings of visual rhetoric in order to explain the role of the intrinsic incompleteness of accounting representations and the visualizations that are produced and referred to in this continuous process of search for perfection.
- maieutic machine
- epistemic objects