PHILOSOPHY OF ART
What is « modernist painting »?
Modernism does not only concern art and literature. Today, it touches almost all of what is truly alive in our culture. For all that, it seems to us a true historical novelty. Western civilization is not the first civilization to inspect and question its own foundations, but it is the one that has gone the furthest in this direction. I identify the advent of Modernism with the intensification, even exacerbation, of this self-critical trend that began with the philosopher Kant. Because he was the first to criticize the very means of criticism, I consider Kant as the first true modernist.
The essence of Modernism, as I see it, lies in the use of the specific methods of a discipline to criticize this discipline itself, not in order to subvert it, but in order to strengthen it more firmly. skills area. Kant has used logic to establish the limits of logic, and even though it was very different from the former jurisdiction of the latter, it strengthened it and assured it all the more firmly in its reduced base.
3The self-criticism of Modernism makes its bed of the Criticism of the Enlightenment while distinguishing itself from it. The Enlightenment criticized from the outside, as criticism in the ordinary sense of the term usually does; Critical modernism from within, through the own procedures of what is criticized. It seems natural that this new kind of criticism first appeared in philosophy, which is critical by definition; But the more advanced the eighteenth century, the more it penetrated many other domains. A more rational justification was demanded from every form of social activity, and Kantian self-criticism, which had first emerged in philosophy in response to this demand, ended up being summoned to fields far removed from philosophy , To find and interpret such justifications.
né le 16 janvier 1909 à New York et mort le 7 mai 1994 dans la même ville, est un critique d’art et polémiste américain.Il est probablement le théoricien qui a le plus soulevé de polémiques à propos de l’art moderne et de la peinture américaine… [wikipedia.org]
« Modemist Painting »
appeared first in 1960 in a radio series broadcast on Voice of America (Washington, DC), and then published by him. Art Yearbook (IV, 1961) takes it back as it is. It then appears, with some slight modifications, in
Art and Literature (no. 4, Spring 1965), and this version is reprinted by Gregory Battcock in his anthology The New Art. A critical Anthology
(New York, E.P. Dutton & Co, Inc., 1966-1973, Dutton Paperback, pp. 66-77).
A French translation, under the title « La peinture moderniste« , appears in Peinture-Cahiers théoriques, n ° 8-9, 1974.
SOURCE: To continue reading more in French, contact: appareil.revues.org