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By W. Tatarkiewicz

The historical past of aesthetics, just like the histories of different sciences, can be handled in a two-fold demeanour: because the heritage of the boys who created the sector of analysis, or because the heritage of the questions which were raised and resolved during its pursuit. the sooner historical past of Aesthetics (3 volumes, 1960-68, English-language version 1970-74) through the writer of the current e-book was once a historical past of fellows, of writers and artists who in centuries prior have spoken up relating attractiveness and paintings, shape and crea­ tivity. the current publication returns to an identical topic, yet treats it differently: because the background of aesthetic questions, ideas, theories. the problem of the 2 books, the former and the current, is partly a similar; yet merely partly: for the sooner e-book ended with the seventeenth century, whereas the current one brings the topic as much as our personal instances. And from the 18th century to the 20 th a lot occurred in aesthetics; it was once merely in that interval that aesthetics completed acceptance as a separate technology, obtained a reputation of its personal, and produced theories that early students and artists had by no means dreamed of.

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In the nineteenth century the argument against them was that they were works of human hands rather than of the human spirit. They served utilitarian purposes rather than beauty and for this reason, because they were not 'pure' art, they were deemed to be unworthy to be counted among the arts at all. At the same time, however, William Morris and the Arts Workers Guild vigorously denounced the distinction between pure and utilitarian art as a pernicious fallacy and demanded the readmission of artisan crafts to the realm of true art.

Thus the classical definition bequeathed to us by the eighteenth century. The whole definition, in its shortest form, would run: Art is that kind of conscious human activity which aims at, and achieves, beauty. Beauty is its purpose, its achievement and its prime value. The connec,tion between art and beauty is a very old idea. , 403c) "Service to the Muses should lead to the love of beauty". Two thousand years later L. B. Alberti demanded of the painter (De pictura, II, p. 88) that all parts of his work should "converge into a single beauty".

ART e un parlar figurato). There is no metaphor in the productions of the handicrafts, whereas there is in literary and theatrical works, in paintings, sculptures, dances: all live by metaphors; that is their common feature, which they alone possess. The fine arts. Already in the 16th century Francesco da Hollanda, speaking of the visual arts, chanced to use the expression 'fine arts' (boas artes in the original Portuguese). Nevertheless, the expression, although it seems so natural to us, at first did not take root.

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