Donal Kuspit: reconsidering

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Take a look here at Donald Kuspit speaking about Spirituality, Art, Kandinsky and Hegel:

” There are lots of books on Kandinsky, and people associated with him; his influence has been widely acknowledged. He’s a truly famous, major figure. In my humble opinion, ultimately more of a revolutionary than Picasso. André Breton, who was not known for kindness, praised Kandinsky, I’m quoting Breton, “as one of the most exceptional, greatest revolutionaries of vision,” which I think is quite an extraordinary statement. I’m not sure that people have fully gotten the whole of why he’s so exceptional.

Now, one of the things that I think is going on in Kandinsky’s art, and in On the Spiritual in Art, is an effort to deal with an issue that was raised in Hegel’s Phenomenology of Mind, which was published just about a century earlier. Phänomenologie des Geistes, it’s sometimes called, phenomenology of mind, sometimes spirit, there are various translations in English, phenomenology of consciousness. And Hegel, if you read it very carefully, reaches a curious point. He goes from sense experience, okay, very particular sense experience, to pure ideational spiritual experience, and he argues that the climax of spiritual activity—let’s use that word—is the spirit knowing itself and coming and becoming itself. And then suddenly, having said that, he flips right back into sense experience, and he says the spirit knows itself most through sense experiences. So we have the idea of spiritualized sensing, so to say, implicit in Hegel, the whole thing starts over again, and I think Kandinsky is trying to address that moment.

Now, I think there’s something else that’s very important that’s going on today. I’m very interested in maintaining what I call the spiritual impulse in art, and I frankly think it’s disappearing. ”

I am very glad for Kuspit’s considerations and choice to write about this topic; which is laughable in some cirlces. In some of my own research about Spirituality in the Art Scene here in Vancouver, i have found that some people are allergic to the topic or closeted and ashamed of being perceived as flakey or even sincere. God forbid !

When i feel these territories can be quite real, worldly, necessary, relevant, intelligent and whole. For the full essay and his introductory comments read:

Reconsidering the Spiritual in Art

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