Homemade Esthetics: Observations on Art and Taste
Thanks to his unsurpassed eye and his fearless willingness to take a stand, Clement Greenberg (1909 1994) became one of the giants of 20th century art criticism a writer who set the terms of critical discourse from the moment he burst onto the scene with his seminal essays Avant Garde and Kitsch (1939) and Towards a Newer Laocoon (1940). In this work, which gathers previously uncollected essays and a series of seminars delivered at Bennington in 1971, Greenberg provides his most expansive statement of his views on taste and quality in art, arguing for an esthetic that flies in the face of current art world fashions. Greenberg insists despite the attempts from Marcel Duchamp onwards to escape the jurisdiction of taste by producing an art so disjunctive that it cannot be judged that taste is inexorable. He argues that standards of quality in art, the artist's responsibility to seek out the hardest demands of a medium, and the critic's responsibility to discriminate, are essential conditions for great art. The obsession with innovation the epidemic of newness leads, in Greenbergs view, to the boringness of so much avant garde art. He discusses the interplay of expectation and surprise in aesthetic experience, and the exalted consciousness produced by great art. Homemade Esthetics allows us particularly in the transcribed seminar sessions, never before published to watch the critics mind at work, defending (and at times reconsidering) his theories. His views, often controversial, are the record of a lifetime of looking at and thinking about art as intensely as anyone ever has.
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abstract art Abstract Expressionism academic art art as art art critic art lover art magazines artists avant-garde art aware bad art become Bennington best art best new art best taste better century Clement Greenberg cognitiveness color Conceptual Art consciousness consensus of taste context conventions Cubism culture decisions difference Duchamp effect esthetic distance esthetic experience esthetic intuition esthetic judgment esthetic value everything expectations experienced esthetically fact far-out art feel formalized art Gerhard Marcks happens high art human Impressionists innovation judgment-decisions judgments of taste Kant kind less logic look major art matter mean modernist night Norman Rockwell painter painting past perience Picasso pictorial picture pleasure Pollock Pop Art prove QUESTION reason Rembrandt satisfaction seems seminars sense shaped canvas somehow surprise Susanne Langer talking about art tell there's thetic things Titian tradition unformalized value judgment verdict of taste words Yves Klein
Page xvi - The essence of Modernism lies, as I see it, in the use of the characteristic methods of a discipline to criticize the discipline itself— not in order to subvert it, but to entrench it more firmly in its area of competence.