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The Philosophy of Art - Essay Example

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The appreciation of beauty has been an integral part of human existence. The search for what is beautiful and the admiration of which has been equated to what is necessarily the sublime. Aesthetics has undergone a process of evolution throughout the years and has been regarded, consciously or not, to be a standard in the creation among artists and those who aspire to be…
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The Philosophy of Art
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The Philosophy of Art

This is where aesthetics sets in as a form of science. As John Keats most famously said “Beauty is truth, truth beauty, - that is all Ye know on earth, and all you need to know” 1 Aesthetics is not an exact science. The term emerged in Eighteenth Century to describe a number of various things and contemplates various theories that pertain to the conception of judgment in terms of artworks and all other objects it encompasses. It is a value and an experience concurrently or simultaneously. In the process, aesthetics is often regarded coinciding with the concept of taste. During the early years of aesthetics, beauty is something instantaneously judge for. This is best perceived in the rationalization of beauty that we experience regularly.2 This is something that is apparent from a day to day basis. It is determined by a number of things as taste may be varied from person to person but there is always that sense of uniformity in the general population of what is beautiful and what is not. From being delineated to the definition of the philosophy of art, subsequent years yielded focus on its value and experience in relation to the aesthetic attitudes. As a subject, Aesthetics is very vast and covers many aspects. The philosopher Immanuel Kant was the first to give a more thorough discussion of what the philosophy of art is. Kant primarily regards that the content is not the main interest of aesthetics and this is equated as a formalist point of view. Art is impure because it has concept and that even in nature it is only through our cognitive ability that we are able to enjoy parts and pieces of it and thus this is freedom. But Kant is quick to add that not every piece of art contains this. This theory of pure beauty contains four aspects; 1. it contains no concept, 2. it is objective, 3. the spectator’s disinterest and, 4. it is obligatory.3 The basic concept in the need for art is the pleasure that is derived from beauty. This is ultimately what we know as aesthetic pleasure. “Kant locates aesthetic judgment halfway between the logically necessary (an example would be mathematical theorems) and the purely subjective (expressions of personal taste).”4 For example, the opinion that something is beautiful as personally perceived by a person is essentially a subjective point of view based on that person’s cognitive sense of what is actually beautiful. Yet it is concomitantly not subjective because the delight derived from it has reason to be the same way with somebody else. If someone sees something beautiful and takes pleasure from, then, shares this with another person is the full circle of the philosophy of art. Beauty does not end in its mere existence, the same must be appreciated and this begins with subjectivity. Another important aspect of art is the emotion that goes along with it. Many regard that this is the most important part of art and what makes it a truly human experience. It is the way that a piece of art makes an impact in its audience that determined whether or not it has achieved what it is meant to be able to do. Pleasure which is the most basic explanation for the existence of art is called ‘expressivism.’ This theory, which is applicable in all art media exemplifies the value of feelings as invested in the artwork by its creator. Leo Tolstoy, among the best novelist of all time, theorizes that ... Read More
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