A Companion to Art Theory (Blackwell Companions in Cultural - download pdf or read online

By Paul Smith, Carolyn Wilde

ISBN-10: 058547091X

ISBN-13: 9780585470917

ISBN-10: 0631207627

ISBN-13: 9780631207627

The spouse presents an obtainable severe survey of Western visible artwork thought from resources in Classical, Medieval and Renaissance concept via to modern writings.

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The relation of the viewer to what is depicted in any figurative work is of course crucial. Alberti had recommended positioning figures in such a way that they invite the viewer to see what is shown, even by some explicit gesture of pointing. But by the eighteenth century questions of whether and how the viewer is implicated within the fiction of the work had become a pervasive theme. In his substantial work on this subject, Michael Fried discusses Diderot’s claims that paintings, which collude with the viewer’s presence, become theatrical.

The ability to represent the body–soul unit is the remarkable innovation of the classical period which changed the whole history of picture-making and picture-understanding. Summary The ancient heritage with regard to the aesthetic field is first of all dependent on the basic distinction between what we know by means of the intellect and by means of the senses. The senses ‘inform’ us about the individual and contingent qualities of particular things whereas the intellect considers the abstracted and common properties of things: we see and hear the colours, sounds and shapes of things but we understand their common natures by the intellect.

31 Tradition and the Academy These three functions constituted the standard justification of the visual arts throughout the Middle Ages. It should be noted that they all take for granted a close connection between art and religion, in subject matter, location and purpose. A more instrumentalist way of putting this would be to say that art was valued primarily for its usefulness to religion. But again, it must be remembered that the assimilation of use to beauty and truth was consistent with the medieval ontology of values.

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A Companion to Art Theory (Blackwell Companions in Cultural Studies) by Paul Smith, Carolyn Wilde


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