Artistic era as a synthesis of different aesthetic dimensions
The conjugation of artistic events with the general cultural process is unquestionable. How subjective the concentration of each artist on internal experiences would be, the modes of expression that he uses ultimately have a universally valid, transpersonal character. Hence the most common temptation is to make general cultural phases of development at the same time the principles of the division of the universal artistic and historical process. However, on closer examination, it turns out that there is a discord in the history of culture about the principles of typology. Researchers in different areas of culture identify relatively stable periods, based on different grounds.
So, economists distinguish in time intervals, when world prices for basic products and raw materials in Europe have steadily increased, and the periods when they have fallen steadily. Historians of political culture tend to differentiate history but the cycles that form this or that system of power. The historians of science lay the basis for the cultural cycle of global scientific discoveries, which were the source of the emergence of a new picture of the world with a qualitatively new view of the world order.
As we can see, the principles of the historical process in the economy, politics, and science are different, although they all relate to a single subject - modifications of forms of human activity within the framework of European culture. The greatest influence of the aesthetic analysis of the history of art was experienced by the science of science, borrowing from it the concepts of "world picture", "intellectual outfit of the era", "imagination culture" , etc. These concepts also began to be interpreted as constituting a special artistic epoch.
Other integrative scientific approaches proved to be quite influential when the researcher aspired to rise to the maximum level of generalization and to link all spheres of activity together, step-by-step recreating the "soul" each type of culture. Such approaches differed the concepts of N.Ya. Danilevsky and O.Spengler, famous for their theories of cyclic development.
Danilevsky singled out ten cycles of the world-historical process. His principles of the division of history were largely imprinted with intuition and subjectivity, but were based on the idea of discreteness, intrinsic to Danilev's idea, inherent in the internal logic of any type of society. This discontinuity, for example, is observed in the late period of the Roman civilization. "In all respects the foundations of Roman life," II wrote. J. Danilevsky, - completed the circle of their development, gave all the results they were capable of, and finally got rid of, there was nothing further to develop. I did not have to go anywhere from where Rome stopped (italics mine - O.K.) - On its way it has reached the limit, it can not be crossed any more, and that was where to go, it was necessary to start from a new point of departure and go the other way. " For Danilevsky undoubtedly, the point between the decline of Rome and the beginning of the Middle Ages is the end of one historical cycle and the beginning of another.
Spengler, in contrast to Danilevsky, distinguishes in world history not ten cycles, but three: the Apollonian-ancient, Arab-magical and West-Faustian cultures. The principles of typology in Spengler are different, they are based on the confrontation of selfless spiritual and civilizational-consumer principles. The West-Faustian type of culture is a new European cycle characterized by the growth of pragmatic, rational sides to the detriment of the spiritually creative and disinterested. Both Danilevsky and Spengler can find many contradictions concerning the arbitrariness of the choice of those grounds that form the historical cycle. Thus, the typology of the general cultural movement can not help to structure the artistic process, if only because it itself does not reveal unity on this problem, uses different optics and dimensions.
It is natural that the described scientific situation oriented the aesthetic analysis of the history of the arts to the search for a meaningful basis of the artistic cycle in internal, and not external for art parameters. However, efforts to find in the artistic body such an initial link, the change and transformation of which spawn new phases and cycles of art, encounter new difficulties. It turned out that in the world of art there is a considerable number of "internal parameters" that predetermined no less polyphony to the submitted problem than among culturologists. First of all, this concerned the definition of the initial link of artistic modification, which could be the basis for the historical typology of the artistic process.
In some cases, the category of the composition was taken as such an initial "atom", which sets the life for all subsequent artistic forms. The researcher demonstrated how various representations of man about the world and himself are refracted in compositional techniques, as some stable types of composition themselves provoke the emergence of others, etc. In particular, such an approach is demonstrated in MV Alpatova's still-relevant book, Composition in Painting. Historical sketch (M., 1940).
Other experts as a source link, retaining its importance throughout the history of the arts, put forward a thematically-shaped system that qualitatively transforms itself into different artistic epochs. A sharp, tectonic change of the image-thematic structure of this or that art gave rise to talk about the onset of a new artistic cycle.
Another group of authors chose the language of art as the semantic basis, the dominant of the lexical expressive means that form the stylistic unity (the works of M. Shapiro, E. Panofsky).
As follows from this panorama, as a modifying internal basis of art, different links and dimensions can be taken. The current situation with the typology of artistic epochs is comparable to the humorous classification of animals that L. Borges once made. All animals, in his opinion, are divided into: a) owned by the emperor, b) embalmed, c) domesticated,p) dairy pigs, l) sirens, f) stray dogs, g) included in this classification, h) rampaging, as in insanity, i) innumerable, c) painted with a very thin brush of camel hair, l) just broke the pitcher, m) from afar seeming flies & quot ;. Such a discrepancy actually shows us the picture that has now developed in the aesthetic analysis of the history of the arts, when the discovery of artistic epochs entirely depends on the dimensions that are placed on their basis.
In an effort to free themselves from chance and arbitrariness, modern science has developed a method of cluster analysis. Its essence lies in the fact that in a multidimensional space corresponding to the number of features on the basis of which types are distinguished, clusters of similar characteristics and observations are revealed. Its purpose is to obtain homogeneous characteristics and observations through various dimensions and approaches. If we apply the results obtained on the basis of different dimensions of the artistic process to a single chronological scheme, then in a number of places a "cloud of points", i.e., will appear. a thickening of various features, indicating certain boundaries in the life of the phenomenon under investigation. The expert will make an unmistakable conclusion: it is in these chronological frames that something significant happens - one is completed and another phase begins. Cluster analysis in the future is able to eliminate many obstacles to the construction of synthetic art history, the identification of dominant phases and qualitative states in it.
For now, the typology of some arts is incompatible with the typology of others, and as a result, the historical and artistic process "gets up" under social or general cultural periodization. The reason for this - often encountered "incongruities in a multi-faceted artistic process.
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