Hegel first distinguishes between ordinary Aesthetics and his notion of Fine Art, that is, Human Creativity. Nature can be Aesthetic, but only Humans create Fine Art, and it is Fine Art that Hegel wishes to explore in this masterpiece. Consequently, although Hegel professes to be lecturing on the philosophy of Fine Art, and although the lectures have a philo sophical background (explicitly. In these second two parts of the Lectures, Hegel documents the development of art from the paradigmatically symbolic architecture to the paradigmatically classical sculpture to the romantic arts of painting, music, and poetry. At the time it was noted for the wealth of pictures included with it.‎Content · ‎Transcripts · ‎Notes.


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Aesthetics: Lectures on Fine Art, Vol 1: Introduction & Parts 1-2

We will consider the exceptions to hegel lectures on fine art and music—below. More specifically, art's role is to bring to mind truths about ourselves and our freedom that we often lose sight of in our everyday activity.

Its role is to show us or remind us of the true character of freedom. Art fulfills this role by showing us the freedom of spirit in its purest form without the contingencies of everyday life.

Aesthetics: Lectures on Fine Art, Vol 1: Introduction & Parts by Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

That is to say, art at its best presents us not with the all too familiar dependencies and drudgery of daily existence, but with the ideal of freedom see Aesthetics, 1: This ideal of human and divine freedom constitutes true beauty and is found above all, Hegel claims, hegel lectures on fine art ancient Greek sculptures of gods and heroes.

Note that the work of idealization is undertaken not like modern fashion photography to provide an escape from life into a world of fantasy, but to enable us to see our freedom more clearly.

Idealization is undertaken, therefore, in the interests of a clearer revelation of the true character of humanity and of the divine. The paradox is that art communicates truth through idealized images of human beings and indeed—in painting—through the illusion of external reality.

It is worth noting hegel lectures on fine art this stage that Hegel's account of art is meant to be both descriptive and normative. Hegel thinks that the account he gives describes the principal features of the greatest works of hegel lectures on fine art in the Western tradition, such as the sculptures of Phidias or Praxiteles or the dramas of Aeschylus or Sophocles.


At the same time, his account is normative in so far as it hegel lectures on fine art us what true art is. Hegel's critique of certain developments in post-Reformation art—such as the aspiration to do no more than imitate nature—is thus based, not on contingent personal preferences, but on his philosophical understanding of the true nature and purpose of art.

Lectures on Aesthetics - Wikipedia

Hegel's Systematic Aesthetics or Philosophy of Art Hegel's philosophical account of art and beauty has three parts: We will look first at Hegel's account of ideal beauty as such. His concern, however, is to identify art's proper and most distinctive function.

Hegel lectures on fine art, he claims, is to give intuitive, sensuous expression to the freedom of spirit.


The realm of the sensuous is the realm of individual things in space and time. Such an individual must not be abstract and formal as, for example, in the early Greek Geometric stylenor should he be static and rigid as in much ancient Hegel lectures on fine art sculpturebut his body and posture should be visibly animated by freedom and life, without, however, sacrificing the stillness and serenity that belongs to ideal self-containment.

It does not, however, exhaust the idea of beauty, for it does not give us beauty in its most concrete and developed form.

Hegel's Aesthetics

hegel lectures on fine art This we find in ancient Greek drama—especially tragedy—in which free individuals proceed to action that leads to conflict and, finally, to resolution sometimes violently, as in Sophocles' Antigone, sometimes peacefully, as in Aeschylus' Oresteian trilogy.

The gods represented in Greek sculpture are beautiful because their physical shape perfectly embodies their spiritual freedom and is not marred by marks of physical frailty or dependence. These heroes are not allegorical representations of abstract virtues, but are living human beings with imagination, character and free will; but what moves them is a passion for an aspect of our ethical life, an aspect that is supported and promoted by hegel lectures on fine art god.

This distinction between pure beauty, found in Greek sculpture, and the more concrete beauty found in Greek drama means that ideal beauty actually takes two subtly different forms. Beauty takes these different forms because pure sculptural beauty—though it is the pinnacle of art's achievement—has a certain abstractness about it.

Hegel's Aesthetics (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Beauty is the sensuous expression of freedom and so must exhibit the concreteness, animation and humanity that are missing, for example, in Egyptian sculpture.

Yet since pure beauty, as exemplified by Greek sculpture, is spiritual freedom immersed in spatial, bodily shape, it lacks the more concrete dynamism of action in time, action that is animated by imagination and language. If art's role is to give sensuous expression to true hegel lectures on fine art, however, it must move beyond abstraction towards concreteness.