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By Dave Davies

ISBN-10: 1405116668

ISBN-13: 9781405116664

During this richly argued and provocative publication, David Davies elaborates and defends a huge conceptual framework for wondering the humanities that unearths vital continuities and discontinuities among conventional and sleek artwork, and among diversified creative disciplines.

  • Elaborates and defends a wide conceptual framework for wondering the arts.
  • Offers a provocative view concerning the types of issues that artistic endeavors are and the way they're to be understood.
  • Reveals very important continuities and discontinuities among conventional and smooth art.
  • Highlights middle subject matters in aesthetics and paintings idea, together with conventional theories in regards to the nature of paintings, aesthetic appreciation, creative intentions, functionality, and creative meaning.

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Extra info for Art as Performance (New Directions in Aesthetics)

Sample text

As we shall see below, Currie, like Dutton, has argued that our critical and appreciative attention to artworks focuses upon the kind of achievement creditable to the artist. Richard Wollheim (1980: 185ff) has defended the thesis that the understanding and appreciation of an artwork is a matter of “retrieval,” of striving to reconstruct the creative process terminating in the product of the artist’s activity. Michael Baxandall (1985) has argued that the appreciation of a painted canvas – an object of intentional visual interest – as a particular artwork involves grasping it as “something with a history of making by a painter and a reality of reception by beholders” (7), a product of directed agency whereby problems are resolved by drawing upon resources available to the artist in the general pursuit of aesthetic or artistic ends realized (or attempted) in the art-object.

But this response to the aesthetic empiricist can be made as soon as the latter appeals to the distinction between artistic and art-historical value. If we allow this distinction to stand for the sake of argument, we cannot unproblematically appeal, as Currie does, to differences in artistic value in setting up a counterempiricist argument. Suppose, however, that Currie’s “Martian child” example can be redescribed so that the difference in ascribed value is a difference in artistic value, a difference pertaining to what all parties would acknowledge to be artistic properties of the two works.

As I shall argue in chapter 3, what is required, as a basis for progress in the ontology of art, is a clearer conception of the structure of the focus of our appreciative attention to a work. This again requires rational reflection from within our critical and appreciative practices, rather than the measuring of our critical judgments against an ontological theory. The pragmatic constraint enables us to bring an account of our critical and appreciative practice to bear upon theses in the ontology of art by means of arguments having the following schematic form – let me call any argument of this kind an “epistemological argument” in the ontology of art: Introduction 23 1 an epistemological premiss.

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Art as Performance (New Directions in Aesthetics) by Dave Davies

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