Sunday, August 29, 2010


Art is described by Heidegger as being aesthetically pleasing or otherwise beauty because it effectively removes an object from its purpose to show it as it truly is. Heidegger's main focus in his work on Aesthetics is arguable the "A Pair of Shoes" done by Van Gogh. By painting shoes, a mundane object that we use to protect our feet, it shows us it's form it's essence. Shoes suddenly become beautiful once you can't wear them.

It is the for-itself that makes the in-itself valuable. The infinitely abysmal lack of purpose that moves us. The truly beautiful is not real. So then is the subject of all art without purpose? No, but it is often a statement that moves us in a specific way for a specific end or literal purpose. Heidegger's ideal form of art is that of the poem, his example being: "The Roman Fountain" by C.F. Meyer. Poetry often has a purpose. So how then can art with a purpose be beautiful? Examining a poem, I personally prefer verse and rhyme schemes because they evoke more emotion when read. Every syllable, every word is chosen for the most specific of meanings and it conveys language so well that it's beauty arises not out of what it's saying, but how it says it. Still removed.

My favorite art form of late has been the paradox. Logic removed from it's purpose. Recently, Scott Adams made a blog post that was full of words intended to make you feel a specific way, without really saying anything.

I can't explain the way it emotionally moved me when I first read it. I can't explain it because I don't understand it. I just felt feelings with no idea why I was feeling them.

Take a look at some of the more famous paradoxes:

This sentence is a lie.

A simple and obvious paradox. This doesn't engage the reader as much. But if you try to wrap your head around it. To logically combat it, you are met with frustration. You know you can't beat it, but you're tempted to try. Why can such a sentence exist? It evokes an emotion a desire that can never be fulfilled all within the instant that you finish the last proposition that the sentence asserts against itself.

And brought to you by wikipedia:
"If there is an exception to every rule, then every rule must have at least one exception; the exception to this one being that it has no exception." "There's always an exception to the rule, except to the exception of the rule — which is, in of itself, an accepted exception of the rule."

Art is everywhere. And I'll leave with a quote:

"I would say that life understood is life lived. But, the paradoxes bug me, and I can learn to love and make love to the paradoxes that bug me, and on really romantic evenings of self, I go salsa dancing with my confusion."

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