By Wilhelm Worringer
Wilhelm Worringer’s landmark learn within the interpretation of contemporary artwork, first released in 1908, has seldom been out of print. Its profound impression not just on artwork historians and theorists but additionally for generations of artistic writers and intellectuals is nearly exceptional. ranging from the concept that good looks derives from our experience of having the ability to spot with an item, Worringer argues that representational paintings produces pride from our “objectified get pleasure from the self,” reflecting a self belief on this planet because it is—as in Renaissance paintings. against this, the urge to abstraction, as exemplified through Egyptian, Byzantine, primitive, or sleek expressionist paintings, articulates a unconditionally various reaction to the realm: it expresses man’s lack of confidence. hence in historic sessions of tension and uncertainty, guy seeks to summary items from their unpredictable nation and rework them into absolute, transcendental varieties. Abstraction and Empathy additionally has a sociological size, in that the urge to create fastened, summary, and geometric varieties is a reaction to the fashionable event of industrialization and the feel that particular identification is threatened by way of a adversarial mass society. Hilton Kramer’s creation considers the impression of Worringer’s thesis and locations his publication in historic context.
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Extra resources for Abstraction and Empathy: A Contribution to the Psychology of Style (Elephant Paperbacks)
Soph. ’ CHAPTER TWO: ANCIENT DYES: COLOR ME BEAUTIFUL Quid de veste loquar? Nec nunc segmenta, requiro Nec quae de Tyrio murice lana rubes. Cum tot prodierint pretio leviore colores, Quis furor est census corpore ferre suos! Aeris, ecce, color, tum cum sine nubibus aer, Nec tepidus pluvias concitat auster aquas: Ecce, tibi similis, quae quondam Phrixon et Hellen Diceris Inois eripuisse dolis; Hic undas imitatur, habet quoque nomen ab undis: Crediderim nymphas hac ego veste tegi. Ille crocum simulat: croceo velatur amictu, Roscida luciferos cum dea iungit equos: Hic Paphias myrtos, hic purpureas amethystos, Albentesve rosas, Threiciamve gruem; Nec glandes, Amarylli, tuae, nec amygdala desunt; Et sua velleribus nomina cera dedit.
Att. 1. 43 Cic. Att. 3. 44 Vitr. De arch. 3. 45 Vitr. De arch. 1. 46 Vitr. De arch. 2. 47 Vitruvius must have spent considerable time with the dyers and producers of color to note these properties. 48 He shows how well the Romans could manipulate dyes to their liking by using heat and chemicals. Another color he discusses that has a special process associated with it is black ink (atramentum), which was made into a liquid substance by heating resin in a furnace with various other ingredients. He describes how the process by which the black pigment is made determines the use to which it will be put — for example, ink for writing, which is mixed with gum; or black resin for house walls, which is mixed with glue.
39 Vitr. De arch. 2. 40 Vitr. De arch. 1. 162. 35 36 COLOR ME BEAUTIFUL 35 making this type of blue, by grinding up sand, sulfur and copper to make a paste that is rolled into balls and then heated in a furnace. 43 Vitruvius’ discussion about this time-consuming process suggests how valuable it was. Like other Latin authors Vitruvius was concerned with the natural and unnatural origins of the color purple. Vitruvius is the only author who describes the process of harvesting the dye from the murex shells by breaking up the shells with iron tools, making the purple liquid flow out like tears — e quibus plagis purpurea sanies, uti lacrima profluens.
Abstraction and Empathy: A Contribution to the Psychology of Style (Elephant Paperbacks) by Wilhelm Worringer