Article on Member Society
News from the Korean Society of Aesthetics for the ICA in Seoul, 2016
The Korean Society of Aesthetics (KSA), the most authoritative nationwide society in the field, was established in September, 1968, being the first association for aesthetics in the Republic of Korea (South Korea). With a 46-year tradition, the now more than 300 members of the KSA are actively engaged in a broad range of aesthetic fields including in terms of traditions, Analytic, Asian, and European aesthetics, and in terms of subjects, theories of painting, aesthetics of music, aesthetics of film, and sociological aesthetics, etc. Our members also play major roles in the various fields of arts and culture in Korea. Many members of the KSA earned their Ph.D. degrees abroad, mainly from the USA, Germany, and France in the West, and China and Japan in the East. So the academic climate of the KSA is comprehensive and well-informed, and the Society is very well-equipped to deal with aesthetics in an international context.
KSA holds semiannual conferences (the first Saturdays of May and November respectively) every year and has published The Korean Journal of Aesthetics (“MI-HAK”) since 1971. The journal, which was published annually at first, began to be issued semiannually in 1997, and became a quarterly journal in 2004. Its latest issue is No. 77 (Spring 2014). Each volume usually contains 5 to 8 articles, mostly in Korean, but occasionally with articles in English or German also.
KSA has actively participated in the International Association for Aesthetics (IAA) from its early stages. The late president of the KSA, Prof. Ki-soo Paik, attended the 10th International Congress for Aesthetics (ICA) in Montreal, in 1984 and participated in the organization of the IAA. Since then, many KSA members have participated in every International Congress for Aesthetics. The KSA held the IAA Executive Committee Meeting in Seoul in 2000, along with the International Conference, "Art, Life, and Culture."
President of the Organizing Committee of 2016 Seoul ICA
The Society for Aesthetics and Architecture and Visual Arts of Serbia and the Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade present: The 2015 Interim meeting of the Executive Committee of the IAA. June 26-28 2015 at the Amphitheatre of the Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia. The theme is Revisions of Modem Aesthetics. All researchers and scholars interested in this topic are invited to participate in the conference with a paper.
Revisions of Modern Aesthetics Topics:
Modern Theories of Space and Architecture
Chair: Jale Erzen, Middle East Technical University, Ankara.
The Status of Aesthetics Today
Chair: Ales Erjavek, Institute of Philosophy, Research Center, Slovenian Academy of
Sciences and Arts, Ljubljana.
Contemporary and Medieval Art
Chair: Vladimir Mako, Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade.
Art and Architecture at the Time of Spectacle and Media
Chair: Misko Suvakovic, Faculty of Music, University of Arts, Belgrade.
One of the important topics of contemporary global culture is revision of modernism and its corresponding theories, aesthetics and philosophies. That is why we have proposed for the Belgrade Conference title “Revision of Modern Aesthetics”. Reviewing the history of modernity and especially aesthetic transformations in the 20th century are challenging issues for contemporary society and culture.
We live in a world of permanent change; a world of desire to get out of the global crisis into the new world of unexpected modernity. Therefore, the project, research, emancipation and the new are the important questions. Through the paradigmatic models of modernity we will try to construct a theoretical, aesthetic and philosophical platform for contemporaneity.
The concept of the conference we developed in four sessions. The first session deals with the revision, reconstruction and research of modernist theories of space and architecture. The aim is to show the viability of space and architecture in the changing world. The second session deals with questions on the status of contemporary aesthetic that transformed the crisis of modern aesthetics into the expansion of aesthetic thinking, politicization of sensuality and discovering new aesthetic experiences and knowledges. The third session, relying on the idea of “historical distance” indicates a comparison of medieval and modem in arts. The fourth session enters in the field of the fluidity, uncertainty and phenomenological transformability of the society of global spectacle and media totality.
The Conference “Revisions of Modern Aesthetics” wants to initiate the discussion from the field of contemporary philosophical and applied aesthetics about who we are today compared to the past in relation to the future. Aesthetics has a right to these fundamental questions.
Admission fee: Students and Ph.D. students 50 euro. Academics and all participants 120 euro
The admission fee covers the attendance to the entire conference, related materials, two light lunches, and the social dinner.
Organizing Committee Dr Misko Suvakovic, President, Society for Aesthetics of Architecture and Visual Arts, Serbia. Dr Vladimir Mako, Board Member, Society for Aesthetics of Architecture and Visual Arts. Dr Vladimir Stevanovic, Registrar, Society for Aesthetics of Architecture and Visual Arts.
The 2016 Seoul International Congress for Aesthetics
Professor Chong-hwan Oh, President of the Organizing Committee of 2016 Seoul ICA
“Out of Time”
Reflexions and Memory of the Middle East by Siniša Vlajkovi?
“Out of Time” – like as if being able to stop the time, and thus being between particular temporal positions. But this being out of time and in-between temporal stances also provides the possibility of observation and comparison. This is what happened with the Serbian photographer Siniša Vlajkovi?, while he was extensively traveling through the Middle East in the beginning of the new Millennia. The artist’s original intention of portraying the everyday-life of the region during his voyage soon turned out to be a self-portrait of an interior journey. Hence the images document a visual diary of a double voyage: a physical one forward in space, discovering new places, and an inner one backward in time, rediscovering similar elements from his childhood memories of the multi-ethnical and multi-religious former Yugoslavia. He suddenly discovered himself being in-between his future-oriented present and his past, and this resulted in the carefully composed works of the series titled “Time Regained” (2003-2008) and “Genius Loci” (2011-2012).
In this way, we, as viewers, can examine Siniša Vlajkovi?’ artworks on two different levels. On the one hand, they can be observed as artistic representations of the everyday-life in the Middle East – documents that are often very different than the ones seen in mass media reportage. But on the other hand, we can also contemplate them on a “meta-level”, i.e. we can also learn from and learn through these photographs the way how to be “out of time”. How to find scenes, views, details and motifs that can remind us of our own past – in the different context of our present. Thus, when being “out of time”, we can develop the sensitivity of discovering elements that connect the various temporal stages of our personal existence, what can help us in the never-ending work of building our own cultural identity. Just like for the artist himself, for us too, being “out of time” will be inspirational and essential for our self-understanding.
Curator of the exhibition
Dr. Zoltán Somhegyi is a Hungarian art historian, teacher and writer currently based in the United Arab Emirates, and working as Assistant Professor at the College of Fine Arts and Design at the University of Sharjah. As a researcher of art history and aesthetics, he is specialized in 18th -19th century art and art theory, and besides this, his other fields of interest are contemporary fine arts and art market trends. He curates exhibitions, participates in international art projects and often lectures on art in Europe and in the Middle East. He is a consultant of Art Market Budapest – International contemporary art fair. He is the author of books, artist catalogues, and more than two hundred articles, critiques, essays and art fair reviews. Since 2013 he is Delegate-at-Large at the International Association for Aesthetics.
The Philosophy of Ernst Cassirer: A Novel Assessment
Marquette University, Milwaukee, USA, June 18-21, 2014
This past summer the Philosophy Department at Marquette University hosted a remarkable conference on Ernst Cassirer (1874-1945), one of the most important thinkers of the twentieth century whose original contribution to modern philosophy, although widely acknowledged by his contemporaries during his lifetime, remained largely neglected in the US until a decade ago. Following the steady rise of the interest in Cassirer in Europe in the recent years, the conference at Marquette became the first large-scale international event on Ernst Cassirer’s philosophy in North America. Presenting scholars with a rare opportunity for an in-depth discussion and reassessment of Cassirer’s vast oeuvre, the conference attracted the speakers from USA, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, Sweden, England, and Belgium.
In his opening remarks, Sebastian Luft, Professor of Philosophy at Marquette University and the key organizer of the conference, pointed out the humanistic ethos of Cassirer's philosophy as the main reason of the persistent interest in Cassirer’s work and the major motivating force behind the ongoing “Cassirer Renaissance.”
The talk given by Fabien Capeilléres, a scientific editor for the French series of Cassirer's works, opened the first section of the conference focused on Cassirer’s roots in the Marburg school of Neo-Kantianism. Capeilléres’ presentation addressed the problem of the definition of “symbolic form,” one of the central concepts in Cassirer’s philosophy. By clarifying the distinction between “symbolic function," which is a transcendental form of intuition, and “symbolic formation,” a concrete product of symbolic function, e.g. art, myth, and language, Capeilléres explicated the trajectory of Cassirer's thought, which transitioned from epistemology to the philosophy of culture through the extension of the logic of scientific knowledge to other forms of cognition.
Samantha Matherne’s presentation on the unity of science and humanities in Marburg Neo-Kantianism continued the discussion by situating Cassirer’s project within the broader context of the Marburg school and highlighting its shared methodological commitment to transcendentalism.
Sebastian Luft’s talk on Cassirer’s transcendental philosophy of culture further substantiated the thesis of the Neo-Kantian influence on Cassirer. By drawing on Levi-Strauss’ idea of cultural invariants and Merleau-Ponty’s concept of “lateral universal," Luft demonstrated how Cassirer’s idea of culture as the historically developing a priori brings the philosophy of culture to its universal standpoint without reverting either to rationalism or relativism.
The following two sections of the conference addressed Cassirer’s philosophy of science and epistemology. Massimo Ferrari’s illuminating presentation focused on Cassirer’s interest in the history of science, which, according to Ferrari, was a direct consequence of Cassirer’s understanding of science as a historically dynamic form of culture. Ferrari provided a nuanced analysis of Cassirer’s original approach to the history of science and his notion of scientific method by contrasting Cassirer's views with those of Kuhn, Duhem and Koyré.
Thomas Ryckman’s talk on Cassirer’s understanding of determinism in physics and Jeremy Heis’ presentation on the philosophy of arithmetic, along with the papers of Alan Richardson and Scott Edgar, created a rich and informative discourse on Cassirer’s approach to exact sciences. Norbert Andersch’s discussion of Cassirer’s theory of psychopathology emphasized the often neglected contribution of Cassirer to medical practice.
Guido Kreis provided insightful comparison of Cassirer's and McDowell's theories of perception thereby situating Cassirer's views in the context of the current debates over conceptual content of sense-experience. According to Kreis, in Cassirer we have a variety of different kinds of perceptions, including the ones he called the "expressive perceptions." Such perceptions are experienced as immediately present to the mind, yet they cannot be isolated from the categories through which they are apprehended. By translating Cassirer’s terms into the language of the philosophy of mind, Kreis was able to bring Cassirer’s voice back in the present-day philosophical conversation.
Pierre Keller’s engaging presentation retrieved Kantian roots of Cassirer’s project by demonstrating how Cassirer reproduced Kant’s Copernican revolution in semiotics. According to Keller’s suggestive interpretation of the Copernican turn, Kant presented an argument for a cosmopolitan conception of reason that maintains all truth to be necessarily contextual and systematic, i.e. grasped from a certain point of view and in relation to all other possible standpoints. As Keller argued, Kant's idea of the systematic unity of theoretical and practical reason purports the existence of the shared context of signification that enables adjudication of all epistemic claims in the common practice of inquiry. In Keller's view, Cassirer takes Kant’s revolution a step further by expanding the context of signification to wider range of human experience including myth, art, language, etc.
Simon Truwant’s talk on the role of the concept of “function” in Cassirer’s historical, systematic ethical writings and Ingmar Meland's reflection on the idea culture in the context of Cassirer's philosophy smoothly transitioned the conversation into the last two sections of the conference centered around Cassirer’s philosophy of culture and history.
Curtis Carter’s instructive presentation focused on the application of Cassirer’s theory of symbols to art and its development by Susan Langer and Nelson Goodman. In his talk, Carter examined similarities and differences between the three theories of art symbols, and insightfully connected the spike of the theoretical interest in art symbols with the concurrent changes in art practices. According to Carter, with the shift from representation to expression as the dominant means of modern art-making, it became necessary for aesthetics to search for alternative ways of understanding art. The theories of Cassirer, Langer and Goodman presented such an alternative, each in its own way. Cassirer’s conception understood art symbols as means by which human beings form their conceptions of the world. Langer and Goodman carried out Cassirer’s project further by analyzing the distinctions between the different types of the symbolic systems. What brings these theories together, according to Carter, is the shared conviction that art plays an important role in cognitive understanding of the world, offering the way of objectifying feelings unavailable to any other symbolic system.
Tyler Friedman and Jennifer Marra, both graduate students at Marquette, represented a new generation of American scholars engaged in the re-assessment of Cassirer’s contribution to aesthetics. Friedman’s paper examined the symbolic critique and the tasks of the art critic implied in Cassirer’s philosophy of culture. In addition to the primary task of the transcendental critique, which is to present the unique character of the formative power of each of the symbolic forms, Friedman argued for yet another important task facing the philosopher of culture. In Friedman's view, the philosopher, who is not immersed in any single form, is charged with an ethical task of defending the plurality of the forms in which human beings experience the world. The task of an art critic, then, is to protect the plurality of culture as plurality of artistic styles and genres.
Jennifer Marra creatively adapted Cassirer’s symbolic theory to reflect on humor. According to Marra, humor is a symbolic form having its own domain, laws and logic. In her view, humor should be distinguished from comedy and laughter and cannot be confined to any particular genre. To do justice to universality and power of humor as a manifestation of the human spirit, humor has to be recognized as a specific form of understanding and experiencing the world. While Marra acknowledged that it may be difficult to draw a distinction between humor and art, she, nevertheless, was able to demonstrate the aspects where humor and art diverge. Following Cassirer's normative claim to keep the boundaries of symbolic forms strict, Marra demonstrated how humor can be used as a tool of political propaganda and organized genocide when it is conflated with other forms such as myth and science.
Anne Pollok gave a thought-provoking talk on the dialogical structure of historical understanding implied in Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic forms. Pollok argued that in the historical reconstruction aimed at understanding the past through artifacts, the historian and the past agent, the creator of the artifact, enter the dialogue with each other via cultural symbols. Such dialogue is enabled by the interpersonal dimension of the symbolic that is always directed at the other and into the future. According to Pollok's interpretation, the past agents strive for "symbolic eternity" manifested in the incessant attempts of human collectives to re-create themselves in the works of culture. The historian who is deciphering the meaning of the artifacts is, therefore, directly responding to the past agent's call for re-enactment, which she does by revivifying the dynamics behind the creation of the past cultures. This way, Pollok argued, history comes close to art, in that it, too, requires the audience that takes an active part in the creation of its works.
The conference was concluded by Steve Lofts, the translator of Cassirer's Logic of Cultural Sciences, who directly responded to the organizers' call for a novel assessment of Cassirer's philosophy by offering a new framework of understanding the intellectual relationship between Cassirer and Heidegger. Lofts metaphorically described the relationship between the two philosophical projects as “The Auseinandersetzung of Thinking and Being,” using for his purpose the German term, which he translated as 'setting out of one another.' In his presentation, Lofts pointed out the important role that this technical term, which designates a “complex relational operation in which the oppositions of a difference co-exist as the mutually defining posing limits of each other,” plays in the works of both Cassirer and Heidegger. According to Lofts, for both thinkers the Auseinandersetzung marks the primary method of philosophy and the fundamental way of viewing the relations and structures of reality. After a detailed examination of the trajectory of both projects Loft came to the conclusion that both Cassirer and Heidegger were engaged in the critical Auseinandersetzung with each other, which helped define the content and shaped their respective projects. Thus understood productive relationship between the two projects exemplifies, for Lofts, the performativity of a symbolic act that brings new event and new meaning into being. To quote Lofts, "Cassirer is the thinker of the transcendental mechanisms of the world formation, whereas Heidegger is the thinker of the event. Together they think the dignity of man at the crossroads of the cultural event."
By showcasing the variety of topics in the contemporary Cassirer research, the conference at Marquette vividly demonstrated that the interest in Cassirer goes far beyond mere historical curiosity. Such interest springs both from the recurring challenges to our understanding of the human nature posed by the development of modern science and technology, and from the time-tested resourcefulness of Cassirer’s project itself, which emerged from an attempt to confront those challenges as they appeared and were articulated in Cassirer’s time. With his symbolic theory, Cassirer aspired to conceptualize the spiritual uniqueness of the human being in the terms that would be compatible with the evolutionary theory and the commitments of naturalism. Whether Cassirer’s humanistic anthropology is equipped to stand up to the challenges of the modern era, the era of genetic determinism and digital revolution, has yet to be determined by the new generation of Cassirer scholars.
With the recently finished publication of the first complete edition of Cassirer’s works, comprising twenty five volumes of the published writings, and with the ongoing publication of Cassirer’s Nachlass, there is plenty of new material essential for our understanding and further assessment of the philosophy of Ernst Cassirer. This gives us a reason to hope that the efforts to revivify Cassirer studies in the US, undertaken by the organizers of the conference at Marquette, will be continued by other researchers, thereby expanding the international “Cassirer Renaissance” to North America. The upcoming publication of the proceedings of the Cassirer conference at Marquette is to become an important step in this direction.
The Les Aspin Center: Arts in a Democratic Society
By Curtis L. Carter (All Rights Reserved.)
Early in my career, I realized that it would be important to bring my theoretical interests in aesthetics to bear on the ways that aesthetics and the arts help shape the societal and environmental dimensions of human life. This passion has led me to integrate aesthetics into a variety of projects beyond traditional academic pursuits including founding an art museum and volunteer leadership on numerous not for profit boards of directors for institutions concerned with the arts and other aspects of urban environments.
An invitation to create a program at the Les Aspin Center for Government on the arts in a democratic society for undergraduates studying at the Center, in conjunction with their semester long internships, allowed me to combine academic interests and a desire to activate the role of aesthetics in society beyond academic circles. The Aspin Center, founded in 1996 under the leadership of Reverend Timothy O’Brien, Director, in the Washington, D. C., is the home of Marquette University’s undergraduate intern program for students seeking a semester long experience, relating to politics and public policy. This program offers courses related to government and public policy issues at the Center and participation in internships in Congressional offices and other related agencies. The semester long project on the arts in a democratic society is offered each semester since 1996 as part of the Center’s curriculum. Additional offerings include courses on the U. S. Congress, Interest Group Politics, Seminar on Urban Social Issues plus individual student internships. Application dates: mid-October for the Spring semester, mid-March for the Fall semester. Students who complete the program receive 15 credit hours. Costs include Marquette University Tuition, housing, and activities fees. Information is located on the Aspin Center Website: http://www.marquette.edu/aspin/
The arts in a democratic society project enables students, whose main objectives are centered on political science and future leadership in government and other aspects of public policy, opportunities for examining the societal roles of arts practices and arts institutions such as museums and other cultural organizations in a democratic society. The challenge was to create awareness and understanding by developing a program that would engage the interns in a philosophical grounding in aesthetics, research into the role of arts institutions, and experiential learning through direct contact with the arts through attendance at museums, theater, dance, and musical performances.
The program includes on site facility tours and seminar-discussions with museum professionals (curators, directors, administrators) at the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum, American Indian, Asian and African museums; the National Gallery, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and the Library of Congress. Other site visits include: a session viewing urban street murals with a leading Washington mural artist, visits to private museums such the Newseum, Phillips Collection, and Anderson House, and the National Shrine in Washington. The interns also attend and write about their experiences at musical, theater, and dance performances: (National Symphony at the Kennedy Center, Arena Theater, and African Dance Theater, for example) throughout the semester in Washington.
The time frame for this semester long program consists of one week of daily sessions at the beginning of the semester, which run from 9 am to 8 pm with lectures, site visits, and discussion sessions. Each day ends with a two-hour discussion period from 6 to 8 pm. For their two-hour classroom discussion sessions, interns prepare a position statement on the discussion topics assigned for the session. The first hour of each discussion session is dedicated to responses to the site visits of the day. The second hour focuses on the theme for the session: For example the themes include: The Role of the Arts in A Democratic Society, Artists’ Rights and Public Policy, Cultural Diversity in the arts and Public Policy, The Role of Government and Private Funding for the Arts, Public Arts and National Arts Policy, and The Art World and the World of Government: challenges and opportunities.
Two additional sessions, each one-month apart, include individual 30 minute tutorials based on a reading list with readings to be completed weekly in the interim periods between the professors’ visits. Readings by philosophers, artists, and social science theorists who write on topics related to aesthetics and society are an integral part of the project. Interns must be prepared to discuss the readings in the oral tutorials, and cite the readings in their research projects.
Interns prepare a two-part research paper: the first half consisting of a written critical analysis of the 6 topics introduced in the discussions during the first week. The second half of the paper consists of an analysis of one of the cultural institutions (museum, theater, performing arts center, etc.,) which requires an interview with an official at the institution and other informational and interpretive sources that contribute to understanding the function, structure, and program of the institution, and assessment of its role, effectiveness, and contributions to a democratic society. A draft of part I and part II, respectively, is reviewed during the two tutorial sessions. These subsequent visits also include site visits, discussion sessions and attendance at a performance.
The objectives of the Arts in a Democratic Society project are these:
- To foster personal growth in understanding visual and performing arts through analysis of the symbol systems used.
- To introduce the role of aesthetics in the context of national policy issues.
- To explore the role of aesthetics and the arts institutions in a democratic society.
- To examine the role of not for profit arts institutions in a democratic society.
- To prepare students for leadership in future arts policy decisions.
Below is a SAMPLE SCHEDULE OF SESSIONS
Introduction: Overview of Course
Discussion: “Looking At Art”: Dr. Curtis Carter, Aspin Center
Site Visit: Museum, National Gallery
Discussion, topic: “The Role of the Arts in a Democratic Society.”
Prepare 1 page written statement of your position on the topic for presentation and Readings: Andrew Buchwalter, “Intro. To Culture and Democracy,” 1-23. Levine, Caroline, Provoking Democracy: “Democracy Meets the Avant Garde,” 1-36.
Seminar/ Site Visit: Guest Speaker: Dr. Gail Lowe, Curator, Anacostia Museum Smithsonian Community Museum including African American History & Culture.
Site Visit: Smithsonian-Asian Museum & African Art Museum.
Discussion: "Cultural Diversity, Alternative arts sites, and National Arts Policy.”
Assignment: prepare a one page Written Statement of Your Point of View on how to address cultural diversity in the arts.
Readings: Garfias & Yoshitomi, “Cultural Equity,” In Benedict, 183-215, Levine, and “Propaganda for Democracy: The Avant Garde Goes to War,” pp. 73-103 Note: Follow this procedure for each discussion session.
Site Visit: Newseum Museum of the Press.
Site Visit: National Museum of American Art.
Discussion: “Artist’s Rights and Public Policy, “Aspin Center. Prepare a 1 page Written statement of Your Point of View.
Readings: Levine, “The People vs. the Arts, in Provoking Democracy, 36-72. Jeffri, The Artist In An Integrated Society,” in Benedict, 96-117; “Artistic Freedom, Public funding, and the Constitution,” Benedict, 80-95.
“Jazz,” Guest Lecture, Christopher Murray
Site Visit: Kennedy Center. Kennedy Center, Kennedy Center Tour. Guest Speaker Jennifer Goodman, Institutional Affairs Office, Responsible for relationships with the White House, Embassies, and Government Offices.
Guest Speaker/Site Visit Library of Congress, Donna Sokol, VIP Relations, LC as Cultural institution.
Discussion: “The Role of Government Funding in the Arts and Culture,” Aspin Center. Prepare a written statement of your point of view on the role of government in supporting the arts.
Readings: Dworkin, “Can A Liberal State Support Arts?,” in A Matter of Principle, 221-233. Cummings, “Government and the Arts,” in Benedict, Public Money & The Arts, 31-78. ; Piper, “Government Support for the Unconventional Arts,” in Buchwalter, Culture and Democracy, 271-2.
Lecture, “Not for Profit Arts & Cultural Institutions in Context”, Aspin Center –Dr. Curtis Carter. Preview of Tutorial Sessions.
Readings: Weil, “Tax Policies and Private Giving,” in Benedict, Public Money & the Muse, pp. 153-181. Recommended: Weil, “The On-Going Transformation of the American Museum, in Daedalus, summer 1999, 229-255.
Site Visit: Phillips Collection, and The Historic Anderson House: Society of the Cincinnati, DuPont Circle.
Performance: African Dance.
Site Visit: Monuments Project Visit: Lincoln, Roosevelt, Korean, Vietnam, Washington monuments. Take notes for response paper on the function of the monuments in our culture.
Discussion: “Public Arts and national arts policies.”
Readings: Griswold, “The Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial & the Washington Mall….” In Mitchell, Art and the Public Sphere, pp. 79-112; Carter, “Toward Understanding Sculpture as Public Art,” in Keping, Ed. Diversity and Universality in Aesthetics, 2010, 180-199.
Film: Artist Jackson Pollock, Aspin Center, and Discussion.
Evening: Washington on your own. Explore and write about your experiences. Do something interesting and different from your usual evenings out! Music, Dance, Theater, or your choice.
REQUIRED: Individual Tutorial Sessions at Aspin Center. Sign up for half hour session. Discussion of research project progress and discussion of readings for first tutorial. NOTE: PLEASE BE PREPARED TO DISCUSS READINGS on the Tutorial Reading List. Please bring a written typed draft of Part I of the research paper. Note: Notify your office of this assignment for excuse.
Performance: Kennedy Center National Symphony Attend with Group. 1 page written response. Attend with Group. Written Response.
Guest Speaker: Randy Cohen, Vice President, American for the Arts, Arts Advocacy (research on the results of arts for various societal enterprises including contributions to community economies, education, health, and addressing at risk youth.)
Site Visits: Museum of American Indian, Hirshorn Museum.
Discussion topic: The World of Government and Politics and the Art World: Points of Intersection: Tensions and Opportunities. Prepare a written statement identifying major points of tension between the art world and government and of the points where cooperation and mutual advantage lie. How can relations between the art world and the world of government and politics benefit from mutual cooperation? Discussion of site visits.
Readings: Danto, ”The Art World Revisited” in Beyond the Brillo Box, 221-133. Eagleton, “Towards a Common Culture,” in Eagleton, The Idea of Culture, 112-131.
Film: “Exit the Gift Shop” Street Art. Discussion, Aspin Center.
Performance: Kennedy Center: Opera: Puccini, “La Bohème.” 1 page response
Site Visit: The Kreeger Museum, Street Murals visit with Artist Byron Peck, National Shrine.
Discussion Topic: Site Visits, overview of major issues and research reports. Readings: Carter, “Artists and Social Change,” in Carter, Ed Art and Social Change, 19-29. Carter, Global Art.
Film: “Ai Weiwei, Chinese Artist.” Viewing and discussion Aspin Center.
Assignment: Submit two page self-analysis of your performance (noting how your understanding of the role of the arts in a democratic society has expanded or changed as a result of your experiences in the project) with the final research paper.
Below is a list of the required reading for the Arts in a Democratic Society Tutorial Sessions
Instructions to Students: The readings are to be completed on a weekly basis throughout the semester as outlined below, in preparation for the two tutorial sessions noted in the syllabus. Please complete the readings according to the following schedule and be prepared to discuss questions related to the content of the particular author’s essays in relation to questions relating to the topic headings in the outline below.
Tutorial I Readings
Topic I: What roles do the arts have in a democratic Society?
Assignment: Prepare your responses to this and subsequent issues using the readings.
Readings First Week
Curtis L. Carter, “When is Art?”
Andrew Buchwalter, “Intro. To Culture and Democracy”
Caroline Levine, Provoking Democracy
Becker, “The Social Responsibility of the Artist”
Topic II: What is the role of cultural diversity in the cultural life of a democratic society?
Readings Second Week
Garfias & Yoshimoto, “Cultural Equality,” in Benedict, Public Money & the Muse”
Cornel West, “The New Cultural Politics of Difference”
Gates, “The Face and Voice of Blackness”
Gomez-Peña, “From Art-Mageddon …A Manifesto Against Censorship”
Von Eschen, “The Goodwill Ambassador: Duke Ellington and Black Worldliness”
Topic III: Artist’s Rights and Public Policy in a Democratic Society
Readings Third Week
Levine, Provoking Democracy
Sullivan, “Artistic Freedom, Public Finding, and the Constitution”
Benedict, “The Artist in an Integrated Society”
Richard Serra, “Art and Censorship,” in WTJ Mitchell, Art and the Public Sphere.
Topic IV: The Role of Government and Private Funding in the Arts
Readings Fourth Week
Dworkin, “Can a Liberal State support the Art?” in A Matter of Principle
Cummings, “Government and the Arts,” in Benedict, Public Money and the Arts
Piper, “Government Support for the Unconventional Arts,” in Buchwalter, Culture and Democracy
Topic V:The role of Public Art in a Democratic Society
Readings Fifth Week
Griswold, “The Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial and the Washington Mall,” in Ed. Mitchell, Art and the Public Sphere
Carter, “Toward an Understanding of Sculpture as Public Art,” in Keping, Ed. Diversity and Universality in Aesthetics, 2010.
The Not-for Profit Cultural Institutions in a Democratic Society
Readings Sixth Week
Weil, “Tax Policies and Private Giving,” in Benedict, Public Money and the Muse
Bourdieu and Tarbel, “Cultural Works and Cultivated Dispositions,” in Love of Art
Danto, “The Artworld Revisited,” in Beyond the Brillo Box
Tutorial II Readings
Topic VII: The role of the museum in a Democratic Society
Readings Ninth Week
Carter, “The Museum as a Purveyor of Culture,” in Art, Life, & Culture
Carter, “Art, Technology and the Museum,” in Leonardo
Weil, “The On-Going transformation of the American Museum,” in Daedalus, summer 1999
Topic VIII: Art and Culture in a Democratic Society
Readings Tenth Week
Eagleton, “Culture Wars,” in The Idea of Culture
Eagleton, “Towards a Common Culture,” in The Idea of Culture
Topic IX: Art and Social Change in a Democratic Society
Readings Eleventh Week:
Carter, “Artists and Social Change,” In Carter, Ed. Art and Social Change
Levine, Provoking Democracy, “Originality on Trial,” Ch. 4, 146-192.
Topic X: Changing Roles for Art
Readings Twelfth Week
Goodman, “Art in Action,” in Encyclopedia of Aesthetics
DiMagio & Bryson, “Public Attitudes Toward Cultural Authority and Cultural Diversity…” in Carey Blake, The Arts of Democracy: Art, Public Culture, & the State
Carter, “Global Art,”
Review for Tutorials
Complete final draft parts I, II.
Research Paper and two page Self-Assessment
BIBLIOGRAPHY: ARTS IN A DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY
A.Hornung, et al Eds. DEMOCRACY & THE ARTS IN THE U.S., Munich, 1996.
Aless Erjavec, POSTMODERNISM AND THE POSTSOCIALIST CONDITION, Univ. of California Press, 2003
A. Melzer, J Weinberer, R. Zimmerman, Eds. DEMOCRACY AND THE ARTS, Cornell U P, 1999.
Andrew Buchwalter, Ed., CULTURE AND DEMOCRACY, Westview Press, 1992.
Arlene Raven, Ed. ART IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST, UMI Research Press, 1989.
Arthur Danto, AFTER THE END OF ART, Princeton University Press, 1997.
Bruce Bustard, A NEW DEAL FOR THE ARTS, The National Archive Trust Fund Board and the University of Washington Crest, 1997.
Carey Blake, THE ARTS OF DEMOCRACY: ART, PUBLIC CULTURE, & THE STATE, W. Wilson Center & U of Pennsylvania Press, 2007.
Caroline Levine, PROVOKING DEMOCRACY: WHY WE NEED THE ARTS, Blackwell, 2007.
Cass Sinstein, DEMOCRACY 7 THE PROBLEM OF FREE SPEECH, Free Press, 1993.
Curtis L. Carter, Ed. ART AND SOCIAL CHANGE, IAA Yearbook, 2009.
Curtis L. Carter and Liu Yuedi, Eds. AESTHETICS OF EVERYDAY, CSP, 2014.
Jean Baudrillard, America, Tr. Chris Turner, Verso, 1998. Saul Bellows, THE ARTS & THE PUBLIC, Univ. of Chicago, 1996.
Noel Carroll, A PHILOSOPHY OF MASS ART, Oxford, 1998.
Stephen Benedict, PUBLIC MONEY & THE MUSE, Norton, 1991.
Stephen Weil, A CABINET OF CURIOSITIES (Museums), Smithsonian, 1995.
Stephen Weil, “The Ongoing Transformation of the American Museum,” AMERICA’S MUSEUMS: Daedalus, Vol. 28, No. 3, Summer, 1969.
Suzanne Lacy, Ed. MAPPING THE TERRAIN, Bay Press, 1995.
Terry Eagleton, THE IDEA OF CULTURE, Blackwell Publishers, 2000.
WTJ Mitchell, ed. ART AND THE PUBLIC SPIRIT, Univ. of Chicago, 1992.
Jale Erzen, IAA First Vice-President (Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey)
on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWSWw9jnsGE
Aarhous University Department of Aesthetics and Communication:
“Mediality, Materiality, Aesthetic Meaning”
The Nordic Journal of Aesthetics http://nsae.au.dk/the-journal/
of the Nordic Society of Aesthetics http://nsae.au.dk/
International Institute of Applied Aesthetics, Finland: http://www.helsinki.fi/iiaa/
British Society of Aesthetics: http://british-aesthetics.org/
Les Aspin Center: http://www.marquette.edu/aspin/
Art in & of the Streets Philosophy Conference
Date: March 5th - 7th, 2015
Location: New York City
Hosts: The Pratt Institute & New York University
- Christy Mag Uidhir (Houston)
- Nicholas Riggle (NYU)
- Gregg M. Horowitz (Pratt)
- What is street art, and who is its proper audience?
- How do the various forms of street art (graffiti, urban vinyl, poster art, street performance and installation) relate to their Fine-Art kin (painting, calligraphy, sculpture, fine-art prints, concert/theatre performance, performance/conceptual art)?
- How does street art relate to other “post-museum” and “post-studio” art forms?
- Is street art essentially site-specific? What are the implications for the restoration or conservation of works of street art?
- Is there such a thing as a street art “aesthetic”? What constitutes authenticity instreet art?
- Does legality/criminality (e.g., vandalism, trespassing, copyright, etc.) play an aesthetic or art-making role for works of street art?
- Do municipalities incur obligations (aesthetic or otherwise) to preserve works of street art?
- How do matters of race, gender, sexual orientation, etc. figure differently within the world of street art as compared to the traditional Artworld?
- What exactly is “the street” as employed in thought and talk about street art?
- Contemporary art in general
- Aesthetics and the everyday in contemporary society
- Specific art practices
- Aesthetics between modernity and/or postmodernity and contemporaneity
- The very concept of contemporaneity
- World art, world literature, world music
- Cosmopolitanism and sensus communis
- The role(s) of media/technology in the production of contemporaneity
- Elisabeth Schellekens Dammann (Uppsala)
- David Joselit (CUNY)
- Dan Karlholm (Södertörn)
- Thierry de Duve
Possible topics include but are not limited to the following:
This conference is funded through generous gifts from: The American Society for Aesthetics and The Pratt Institute.
Call for Papers
Sustainable City Life: Exploring Aesthetic Values in Urban Settings.The XIth IIAA International Summer Conference on Environmental Aesthetics.
Lahti, Finland, August 6-8, 2015.The International Institute of Applied Aesthetics (IIAA) will arrange the XIth IIAA Summer Conference on Environmental Aesthetics in Lahti, Finland, August 6-8, 2015.
Theme: “Sustainable: City Life. Exploring Aesthetic Values in Urban Settings.”
Urbanization is one of the major trends of the contemporary world posing problems in need of urgent solutions. Especially questions of sustainability have been in the forefront. However, it is important to note that sustainability does not merely encompass ecological and environmental considerations. It is equally important to take social and cultural factors into account when forming a view on what makes urban life sustainable. As an increasing number of the world’s population live in cities, solutions of urban planning and urban life that contribute to a more sustainable life can have a major impact globally.
Aesthetic considerations form undeniably one of the important aspects of urban experience – aesthetically satisfying environments, for example, increase human well-being. But what could the role of aesthetics be in attempts to create a more sustainable urban life? Some aesthetic decisions in an urban context can, for example, lead to an excessive use of natural resources and, thus, are in conflict with the goal of sustainability.
However, it is possible to look at the relationship of aesthetic considerations and sustainability from another angle. Innovative environmental art can be a powerful means to improve people’s ecological awareness, thus forming one platform where ecology and aesthetics meet. The preservation of cultural heritage in an urban setting central to the issue of cultural sustainability has an aesthetic aspect to it as well. The issue of the cultural sustainability of landscapes has also received growing interest. Moreover, the important role of aesthetics in urban well-being is hard to deny. The ultimate contribution that environmental aesthetics can have on the issue of urban sustainability, however, demands much more reflection.
For more information on the IIAA, please visit: http://www.helsinki.fi/iiaa/
Conference fee: 100€ and 50€ graduate students.
Call for Papers
Annual conference of The Nordic Society of Aesthetics, 28-30 May 2015
Aesthetics, Contemporaneity, Art
Recent theoretical developments claim that the general condition of our everyday life and artistic production today is one of contemporaneity, where the urgent question of being with time, or being genuinely ‘contemporary’, is a matter of understanding a coexistence of different temporalities and various ‘ways of being in relation to time’. Thus, in recent decades we have seen a worldwide shift from modernity and postmodernity to contemporaneity, perhaps most evident in the fact that “contemporary art” has substituted “modern art” as descriptor of the art of our historical present. Advances in communication technologies – in short, the internet – in particular have produced an extreme spatial and temporal compression, which alters the ways in which we experience places, events, and time as everything happens as if contemporaneously.
With this conference we want to explore the aesthetics of our contemporary time, this condition of contemporaneity, and its relations to art and aesthetics more generally. We propose to analyze and discuss how contemporaneity affects our experience of time, aesthetic sensibility, the everyday, and our conception of contemporary art.
Topics of interest might include, but are not limited to:
Conference fee: 550 DKK/PhD Students 300 DKK
(includes one year membership of The Nordic Society of Aesthetics and one year subscription to The Nordic Journal of Aesthetics – members who have paid the 2015 fee will have their conference fee reduced by 300 DKK/150 DKK).
Conference dinner: 300 DKK/PhD Students 200 DKK.
More information about practicalities etc. will be posted on www.conferences.au.dk/nsae2015
Morten Kyndrup, Jacob Lund, Thomas Bjørnsten, Birgitte Stougaard, Lotte Philipsen, and Lea Muldtofte Olsen.
The British Society of Aesthetics announced a second round of funding for its successful Connections series of conferences. The Society will fund two conferences, each with a grant of up to £12,000. Connections conferences are designed to enhance the dialogue between aesthetics and other areas of philosophy. The majority of papers will be by philosophers who have hitherto not had a primary research focus in aesthetics (effectively an AOS in aesthetics), though they may have made some contributions to the field. The remainder of the presenters will have a research specialism in aesthetics. Papers will explore the connections of other areas of philosophy with aesthetics, or be in aesthetics. The selected conferences will be held within one year of the notification of a successful application; in the UK (though the organizers need not be based there). The BSA expects to be the sole funder of the conference, which should include 'British Society of Aesthetics Connections' in its title, and all conference materials should publicize the role of the BSA. Proposals were accepted in December 2014. These proposals included possible dates and venue, draft budget, and a list of proposed speakers and topics. Applicants were informed of the outcome of their applications in January 2015. For more information on the proposal process see:
Announcement: IAA Yearbooks
During the 19th International Congress of Aesthetics in Krakow (July 2013) the IAA Yearbooks No.15 and No.17 were presented. It's my pleasure to announce that both books are now available on the website of the IAA as Open Access editions. Please visit the website of the IAA (http://www.iaaesthetics.org/publications/yearbooks).
Announcement by Member Society
Please note the revised title and contact information for the Italian Society for Aesthetics:
Societa Italiana d’Estetica
c/o University delgli Studi di Palermo
Viale delle Scienze, Edificio 12, 90128 Palermo, Italy
Contemporary Aesthetics is an international, interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed online journal of contemporary theory, research, and application in aesthetics.
Contemporary Aesthetics encourages the submission of articles that bear directly on contemporary aesthetic theory and concerns, as well as current reassessments of traditional issues. Articles that are primarily historical or that focus on particular art works or individual artists are not appropriate to the mission of this journal. The discussion should be accessible to an audience across disciplines and promote conversation across fields and practices. We welcome the use of visual images and auditory and video clips to illustrate the text. The length of articles is normally no greater than 5,000 words but should not exceed 7,000 words, including an abstract and notes.
CA welcomes articles, symposia, forums, proposals for special volumes, and announcements. All submissions and proposals are reviewed. Articles are blind-refereed and peer-reviewed, and are added to the volume immediately after acceptance, the volume growing regularly during the course of the year. There is no charge for accessing Contemporary Aesthetics. CA is an open access journal and may be accessed, downloaded, and copied free of charge but are subject to a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.
Contemporary Aesthetics now has a quarterly newsletter that sends out links to recent and forthcoming articles in CA. If you wish to receive these notices, please subscribe to our mailing list. The subscription, as well as access to the journal, is free.
Contemporary Aesthetics Inc. is incorporated in the State of Maine, USA, and is licensed as an Exempt Charitable Organization. Mailing address: P.O. Box 52, Castine, ME, 04421, USA. Website: www.contempaesthetics.org
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR AESTHETICS L’ASSOCIATION INTERNATIONALE D’ESTHÉTIQUE
Honorary Life Members:
Arnold Berleant (USA)
Tonomobu Imamichi (Japan)
Joseph Margolis (USA)
Stefan Morawski (Poland) Deceased
Mikel Dufrenne (France) Deceased
Officers and Delegates
Executive Committee Officers (2013-2016)
President: Gao Jianping (Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing, People’s Republic China)
First Vice-President: Jale Erzen (Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey)
Second Vice-President: Stephen Davies (The University of Auckland, New Zealand)
Secretary-General: Tyrus Miller (University of California at Santa Cruz, USA)
Assistant Secretary General: Hiroshi Yoshioka (University of Kyoto, Japan)
Mary Wiseman (USA)
Wang Keping (China)
Min Joosik (Korea)
Lydia Warlhira Muthuma (Kenya)
Zoltan Somhegyi (Hungary/Turkey)
Curtis L. Carter, Past President, (USA)
Jos de Mul (The Netherlands): Webmaster, Guardian Online Yearbook
Alan Shear (USA): Newsletter Editor
American Society for Aesthetics: Eva Dadlev
Asociacion Argentina de Estetica: Rosa Maria Ravera
Australian and New Zealand Association for Literature and Art and Aesthetics: Eugenio Benitez
Brazilian Society for Aesthetics: Rodrigo Duarte
Canadian Society for Aesthetics / Société Canadienne d'Esthétique: Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin
Chilean Society for Aesthetics: Margarita Schultz
Chinese Society for Aesthetics: Peng Feng
Croatian Society for Aesthetics: Nadežda Cacinovic-Puhovski
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ästhetik: Karlheinz Lüdeking
Dutch Aesthetics Federation: Renée van de Vall
European Society for Aesthetics: Zsolt Batori
Finnish Society for Aesthetics: Risto Pitkänen
Société Française d'Esthétique: Carol Talon Hugnon
Société Hellénique d'Esthétique: Theresa Pentzopoulou-Valalas
Israeli Society for Aesthetics: Ruth Lorand
Associazione Italiana per gli Studi di Estetica: Raffaele Milani
Japanese Society for Aesthetics: Motoaki Shinohara
Korean Society for Aesthetics: Yoon-soo Paik 2008-2010, Chong-hwan Oh 2011-2013.
Latvian Association for Aesthetics: Mara Rubene
Lithuanian Society for Aesthetics: Vaidas Matonis
Mexican Society of Aesthetics: Katya Mandoki
Nordic Society for Aesthetics:Lars Olof Åhlberg
Polish Society of Aesthetics: Krystyna Wilkoszewska
Council of Aesthetics, Russian Academy of Sciences: Konstantin Dolgov
Serbian Society for Aesthetics of Architecture and Visual Arts: Misko Suvakovic
Slovenian Society for Aesthetics: Aleš Erjavec
L'Association Tunisienne d'Esthétique et de Poïétique: Rachida Triki
Sanart Association of Aesthetics and Visual Culture, Turkey: Jale Erzen
American Society for Aesthetics.
Argentinean Society For Aesthetics / Asociación Argentina de Esthética
Australian and New Zealand Association for Literature and Aesthetics
Brazilian Society For Aesthetics / Associação Brasileira De Estética
Baltic Association for Aesthetics
Canadian Society for Aesthetics / Société Canedienne dEsthetique
Chilean Asociation for Aesthetics / Asociacción Chilena de Estética
Chinese Society for Aesthetics / Zhonghua Quanguo Meixue Xuehui
Croatian Society for Aesthetics
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ästhetik
Dutch Aesthetic Federation
European Society of Aesthetics
French Society of Aesthetics/ Société Française d'Esthétique
Finnish Society for Aesthetics / Suomen Estetiikan Seura
Ha'aguda Hayisraelit Le'aesthetica
Hellenic Society for Aesthetics / ???????? ???????? ??????????
Italian Association of Aesthetics / Associazione Italiana per gli Studi di Estetica
Japanese Society for Aesthetics (Bigaku-Kai
Korean Society of Aesthetics / ?????
Latvian Association for Aesthetics
Lithuanian Society for Aesthetics / Lietuvos estetiku draugija
Mexican Society of Aesthetics / Asociación Mexicana de Estudios en Estética
Nordic Society of Aesthetics / Nordiska sällskapet för estetik/Nordiska saellskapet foer estetik/Nordisk Selskab for Aestetik/Nordisk selskap for estetikk/Félag norraenna fagurfraedinga/Pohjoismaiden estetiikan seura
Polish Society of Aesthetics / Polskie Towarzystwo Estetyczne
Aesthetic Association of Russia / Rossijskaya Aesteticheskaya Assoziazia
Serbian Society of Aesthetics for Architecture and Visual Arts
Slovenian Society of Aesthetics / Slovensko drustvo za estetiko
L’Association Tunisienne d’Esthétique et de Poïétique / A.T.E.P.
SANART - Association of Aesthetics and Visual Culture Turkey / Sanart; Esthetik ve Görsel Kültür Dernegi)
International Yearbook of Aesthetics
Volume 12, 2008, Editor Jale Erzen
Volume 13, 2009, Art and Social Change, Editor Curtis L. Carter
Volume 14, 2010, Diversity and Universality in Aesthetics, Editor,Wang Keping
Volume 15 2011, Gimmie Shelter, Editors Renée van de Vall, Jos de Mul
Volume 16 2012, Editor Peng Feng, Pending
Volume 17 2013, Nature and the City, Editors Jale Erzen, Raffaele Milani
Webmaster: Jos de Mul
Guardian of the online Yearbook: Jos de Mul
Newsletter Editor: Alan Shear
The IAA/AIE Newsletter
Membership Application / Renewal
Please note that the membership rate is $30.00USA for three years.
Membership rate is $15.00USA for students for three years.
Please include the following information:
National or International Society (if any)