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Category Archive for 'Art Writing'

ShareThe trouble is that modern art in various ways abandoned imitation, representation, naturalism, and it now has to make out a case for its products’ still being truth. This is where science certain aspects of science are seized upon, assimilated, or sometimes simply plagiarized in decorative words, so as to bolster up art’s claim to [...]

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ShareAmong the more unnerving aspects of contemporary culture is the accelerating pretense of art to the aims, methods, and achievements of science. Call it art in drag, art in the costume of systematized knowledge, gained through observation and experiment, of the material world and its social structures. Art as counterfeit science, more accurately, as complement [...]

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ShareAmong Platonists, man is mind, intellect, above all else. Man is ordained to think. His province is learning and true wisdom. The rest is flesh and appetite, or, in the phrasing of Timaeus , an Eros of begetting. A common, ignoble thing that resides in the lower precincts of the body and pulls us earthenward, away [...]

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ShareBeauty will save the world—a mantra among contemporary Christians issuing from the mouth of a character in nineteenth century Russian fiction.

Augustine’s Beauty has already saved the world. Our ransom has been paid. What matters now is whether the world cooperates with its redemption or flouts it. History will tell in the end. The arts of [...]

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Our Present, Our Art

ShareThe feeling for things in themselves, for reality, is more important than the feeling for pictures.
—Vincent Van Gogh

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us be glad and rejoice in it.
—Psalm 118:24

I love the words of that psalm. They repeat in my heart like a mantra. This is the day —not just today, [...]

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ShareArt is an eminently earthly thing.
—Pierre Revardy (1927)

Beautiful things are those which please when seen—and, of course, I mean mentally seen, and therefore pleasing to the mind . . . . Anything is beautiful if it be made in such a way as to give pleasure to the mind which perceives it, and the question [...]

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Share“Charles,” said Cordelia, “Modern Art is all bosh, isn’t it.”
“Great bosh.”
“Oh, I’m so glad. I had an argument with one of our nuns and she said we shouldn’t try to criticize what we didn’t understand. Now I shall tell her I have had it straight from a real artist, and snubs to her.”
—Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited

Just [...]

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ShareIt is an odd thing, this culture of blogging. I am still not fully at home with it.
The very word blog makes me wince. It is an ungainly term, ugly to look at on the page and even uglier to hear spoken. Gelatinous. The word comes dangerously close to blob . If I had to pick a [...]

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The Hazard of Beauty

ShareTalk of beauty is in the air these days. It has been absent as a reigning value in contemporary art long enough to be provoking interest once again. It is a bit of a jumble though. Everyone wants in on the beauty of the philosophers while reserving for themselves the ascendency of their own taste [...]

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ShareI know many persons who have the purest taste in literature, and yet false taste in art, and it is a phenomenon that puzzles me not a little; but I have never known any one with false taste in books and true taste in pictures.
John Ruskin

John Ruskin was skeptical of the Victorian era’s flourishing publishing [...]

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