Thursday, May 8, 2014

Blog 11 - The Aesthetic Appreciation of Grandiose Buildings

In class we had several discussions about whether or not the mansion on Turkey Foot was aesthetically pleasing. During this discussion the concept of intent came into trying to decide whether we could find such a mansion beautiful if we focus on the intent. Carlson would argue that the intent of the architectural design adds to our historical knowledge, which is necessary for an appropriate aesthetic response. Added to the criteria of our appreciation was the idea of whether the mansion fits well in the location. I contend that the intent of the owner can have a big impact on the appreciation of the mansion. This impact stems from ethical aesthetics, if the owner had an immoral or unethical reason to building the mansion next to smaller house, then that would decrease our aesthetic appreciation of it. But what if we don't know about the owners intent? Could we still use ethical aesthetics to evaluate it? I believe that we should not incorporate the possibility of intent in our criteria for appreciation. But rather focus on what is available to evaluate it. What is available is that there is a grandiose building that overshadows the rest in the neighborhood, when we pass it we are in awe of it. I ask, does the fact that this building stands out in its environment detract from our appreciation of it? Carlson argues that we should focus on elements in the vast and promiscuous environment to gain an appropriate aesthetic experience. As, such given that the mansion focuses our attention for us can we gain an appropriate aesthetic experience from it, given that focusing on it would ignore the presence of the other houses next to it? These are but a few question I have about the aesthetic appreciation of nature.

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