I found my notes to this book in a box in the loft part of what will become known as The Bryant Papers in a few decades I m sure These notes are nothing or less than a Complete Theory of Art and Art here means Everything from Rheims cathedral to South Park So here it is I m sure most of this is Barzun s ideas
but I m pretty sure I added and tweaked a bit too and it s my list of examples at I m pretty sure I added and tweaked a bit too and it s my list of examples at end So THE "VERY SHORT BUT COMPLETE THEORY OF ARTArt performs one or of three "SHORT BUT COMPLETE THEORY OF ARTArt performs one or of three decorative aesthetic JB calls this art as the enhancer of life 2 Self expressive which may be called therapeutic JB calls this art as a sanctuary art as better than life a truer reality 3 Ideological aka inspirational which subdivides into a philosophicalreligious and b political JB calls this art as the detergent of life art for a better life Further all art in these categories can be presented in two distinct modesi the lyric the celebratory the incantation the expression of depth the interiorii the narrative an incarnation within a seuence of events the expression of breadth the exteriorIn order to make all this abstraction clearer here are examples of each function and each mode Not all are a perfect fitTHE NOVELDecorativelyric The Waves by Virginia Woolf not all novels employ plot narrative and this one is like poetryDecorativenarrative any comedy or detective story so let s say The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie or Right Oh Jeeves by PG Wodehouse These novels are wonderful decorationsSelf expressivelyric Proust I don t think people read him for the alloping page turning heart thumping twists and turns of the plotSelf expressivenarrative any autobiographical novel say Sons Lovers by D H Lawrence or The Country Girls by Edna O Brien I love that oneIdeologicallyric I uess this would be any major statement by an author in the form of a novel so Utopia by Thomas Moore or the Fountainhead by Ayn rand would do again you don t read these for the storyIdeologicalnarrative there are hundreds Germinal by Zola The Grapes of Wrath by Steinbeck anything by Upton SinclairPAINTINGDecorativelyric all Bracue s cubist stuff all Fauvism MatisseDecorativenarrative Renoir s lovely illustrations of Parisian life les Parapluies will do nicely or Her First OutingSelf expressivelyric all your abstract impressionists fit here Pollock RothkoSelf expressivenarrative The Beatitudes of Love by Stanley Spencer all about his own odd life and very movingIdeologicallyric all propaganda posters Soviet social realismIdeologicalnarrative Guernica by PicassoPOPULAR SONGDecorativelyric arguably the majority of pop songs exist just to decorate our lives and nothing Hello Goodbye by The Beatles is an example of a particularly meaningless song which I happen to like a lot but couldn t really tell you why Decorativenarrative comedy songs will do here let s say Ernie the Fastest Milkman in the West by Bennie Hill or With My Little Stick of Blackpool Rock by George Formby
I HOPE YOU KNOW THAT ONESELFhope you know that oneSelf here come all the mournful singer songwriters Mother by John Lennon Sara by Bob Dylan The reat mass of blues songs fit in here tooSelf expressivenarrative The last Time I saw Richard by Joni Mitchell or Ballad of John and Yoko by the moptopsIdeologicallyric Four Women by Nina Simone Crime in the City by Neil Young What s the matter Here by 10000 ManiacsIdeologicalnarrative Deportee by Woody Guthrie The Byrds do a American Pronghorn: Social Adaptations and the Ghosts of Predators Past great version The lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll by Dylan Hurricane by Dylan Only a Pawn in their Game by DylanPOETRYDecorativelyric You re by Sylvia PlathDecorativenarrative The Eve of St Agnes by jovial John Keats The Hunting of the Snark by Lewis CarrollSelf expressivelyric Poem on my Birthday by Dylan ThomasSelf expressivenarrative In memoriam by TennysonIdeologicallyric all yourreat World War One poetsIdeologicalnarrative Essay on Man by PopeMOVIESDecorativelyric musicals often have little or no narrative content just the thinnest excuse for a story to drape the songs and routines over so any Fred Astaire film fits here or recently Moulin Rouge was there any story in that one at allDecorativenarrative superhero movies caper movies like Oceans 12 Bourne Identity all that stuffSelf expressivelyric Scorpio Rising by Kenneth Anger Pan s Labyrinth The Long Day Closes Me and You and Everyone we KnowSelf expressivenarrative Diner Slacker Hollywood Shuffle In AmericaIdeologicallyric Human NatureIdeologicalnarrative The Godfather trilogy Boyz n the Hood The Rapture I really want to see that one again but it s not available An Audience of Artists: Dada, Neo-Dada, and the Emergence of Abstract Expressionism grrrWell it s aame anyone can play I found M Barzun to be a very stimulating companion I have to begin this review by When an extremely intellectual extremely experienced extremely wise man shares his thoughts with others the result seizes the imagination at once Such is the effect of these essays a series iven as lectures at.
Jacques Barzun ´ 3 read & downloadLawed and imperfect2 To make the WORLD A BETTER PLACE ART SHOULD a better place art should consumed and created3 The pursuit of rational utilitarian ends should be eschewed The problem is that this idea just doesn t work looking at beautiful pictures all day will not solve our pressing moral problems Rather than ive up the fight however each successive Aristotle's Rhetoric: An Art of Character generation of artists inevitably doubles down on their beliefs leading to the whole history of modern artoing deeper and deeper into the ugly depressing irrelevant bizarre etc The previous Anthropology as Cultural Critique: An Experimental Moment in the Human Sciences generation of art didn t transform our forsaken world into an aesthetic utopia therefore we need too deeper into revealing the world itself as ugly and abhorrent we need to o deeper into emphasizing the irrational etc Eventually leading to the baffling ruinous state of contemporary art today This is an interesting thesis to me It seems very intuitive to me when looking at the contemporary art scene that This Is Not How It Should Be that there is a sort of natural organic impulse in the human system to create art but today s artists have deviated from it drastically so drastically that almost everything that comes out of their mouth when they try to talk about art seems wrong as if they are approaching the problem entirely the wrong way This sense that we ve left a healthy way of living and one horribly wrong somehow naturally has us looking for a Fall an erroneous historical decision to which we can Between Silences give blame for the whole trajectory It s easy to find these scapegoats Marxism is aood one non representation is another but what this book implies is that the Fall is synonymous with the invention of the concept Art itself It truly is a Biblical narrative it s man as artist becoming self conscious which lead him to bite the apple of knowledge and be expelled from the Betrayals garden This means that any artist who may dream of restoring Art to its formerlory is in an entirely wrong place looking to Art for salvation makes you the problem in the first place The book includes a number of lectures by Mr Barzun to the National Galery London in which he shares his ideas about art It is an intellectual voyage with lots of statements to overthinkThe author cites Ruskin that a Betrayals: The Unpredictability of Human Relations great nation producesreat art After all all else passes but art alone endures It can shape the minds and emotions of men as well as enlarge their imagination Great art thrills and helps to learn about oneself the other and the world Next to that art cannot be divorced from moral and social significance Art is not neutral and will thrive when there is a unity between state and religion since the latter helps emotions and symbols to converge Art shows direction and embodies the divine It is the ateway to the spirit the enlargement of nature To prove his point Barzun uotes Hegel Berlioz and Goethe who all confirm the interconnectivity between nature religion and artSince the age of "science protestantism and renaissance the artist no longer preaches accepted morality but claims its own "protestantism and renaissance the
artist no longer preaches accepted morality but claims its own morality Art is no longer instrumental and illustrative to religion Ruskinno longer preaches accepted morality but claims its own morality Art is no longer instrumental and illustrative to religion Ruskin Newman believe that religion can oppose materialism positivism and the reduction of human life But Nietzsche s transvaluation of values encouraged like Shaw and Ibsen to break with tradition Barzun refers to an all male cast of the play Trojan Women Whereas the Romantics tried to imitate high art other art movements simply led to decadence Symbolism removes nature is non objective and reductive Naturalism Zola Courbet is obscene and urges rather to bruise than to bring catharsis Functionalist architecture reduces buildings and houses to being functional whereas architecture is typically multifunctional TS Eliott once said that art is a simplification of life into something rich and strange According to Barzun minimal art is then just a short circuit He sees similarities between modern art and science as both claim to be universal and eternal by using statistical mathematical and abstract methods Eg poetry has turned into a form of structure but is no longer about literature and emotions The standard is no longer the link to mankind or to imitate nature No need to say that Mr Barzun regrets this trend in art Moderately difficult read but very much a classic This author is clear and concise about how we use and abuse art and how art uses and abuses us at times Barzun is a comprehensive historian with years of experience in studying the zeitgeist of societies In reading this book I discovered my own definition of art which will help me to understand what I like and do not like I will read again and again For everyone who is an artist Gives you a clear perspective of what Art is. T should indeed be mystery But that need not stop any of us from dealing with it as if we understood than we can And how ood it is to have one's mind stretched to that understanding of Virginia uarterly Review. .
Aying I am a huge fan of Jacues Barzun After being introduced to him through reading Dawn of Decadence when it was published I have read as many of his books as I can find He has an acute sense of culture and history and is a straight forward writer I was not disappointed in this book There are six chapters that were "each a lecture iven as part of the A W Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts Barzun has insights " a lecture iven as part of the A W Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts
Barzun has insights the development of modern art that seem right onhas insights the development of modern art that seem right on teach an omnibus class that discusses art and I learned so much by reading this book that I can t wait to share in class I do wonder what further insights Barzun has about art since 30 plus years have passed since he wrote it in 1973 If you are interested in the state of art and wonder how we Barrio: Photographs from Chicago's Pilsen and Little Village got to the point we are today read it for some thought provoking ideas Nicely crafted essays on the way we ve defined art in the past couple of centuries and on what we ve expected from art redemption social change social definition Barzun is speaking to aeneral audience and the collected essays here originally iven as lectures in the mis 1970s are presented without illustrations so there s a feeling here of being left without concrete examples but Barzun s knowledge of art history is sweeping and his ability to relate changes in how art is defined and used to changes in technology and its own social standing is unmatched Thought provoking but at times difficult to follow Barzun s massive intellect overwhelms The book which consists of a series of lectures could have been dramatically enhanced by illustrations and images of the art styles referenced Thankfully post modern art lacks so completely in imagination it didn t make much difference when he was speaking to it My takeaway from the book very simply put is that a society s Art reflects back what is stirring in the collective consciousness While the West was redefining itself after the fall of Rome with the new ideology of Christianity Art thrived and had tremendous power The Art of Europe painting architecture poetry drama was Church mandated and paid for An artist with talent could thrive throughout the centuries creating Art that was new and rand The collective imagination of Europe was in a state of wonder and Man s relationship with the Universe was new territory to be explored But with the death of God in the nineteenth century all fascination with the transcendent died too Man was now adrift as an isolated imperfect creature unloved and disposable to an indifferent Universe What Blank Darkness: Africanist Discourse in French great Art could possibly come out of that Barzun ends his last lecture on a hopeful note that somehow in the distant future Man will find new inspiration to create new Art forms I doubt it The best of ourselves was shown to us by thereat Masters of long ago Modern Art can only reflect our pitiable state Not much incentive to Back to the Breast: Natural Motherhood and Breastfeeding in America goallery hopping I have trouble digesting art criticism Maybe some of the things talked about in this book will sink in and inform me By the time that happens in the future I will be unable to say whether or not they came from this book or from other mysterious sources An excellent concise brilliant analysis of how art has replaced religion in the last century I now understand why so much of modern art I find bewildering depressing and offensive Th Really managed to crystallize a bunch of scattered ideas swirling around in my "Head About Why Art Is "about why art is fucked up and why people are so fucked up too I At Stake: Monsters and the Rhetoric of Fear in Public Culture guess The ideas in this short book are uite forcefully presented meditations on like the Western soul and other abstract philosophical entities yet all ended up feeling instinctively true to me in a when you see it you can t not see it sort of way It s as if the inscrutable people we know of as art lovers and artists have clumsily dropped their scripts and notes and now we can pick the mess up off the floor and read it all to figure out exactly what theseuys are all about I ll do my best to summarize the thesis here as simply as I canAt some point in the midst of the age of Enlightenment thoughtful souls began to feel that there needed to be something in life to Black Nationalism: The Search for an Identity guide us beyond rationality and empiricism yet few wanted too back to the old religious ways Art with a capital A was settled on as encapsulating what this supra rational force should be Therefore the production of Art was held to be desirable for its own sake The idea was that the creation of beauty would in hope reflect images of a desirable world which would eventually Black and White Strangers: Race and American Literary Realism guide us into bringing that world about This lead to a new unspoken self propagating ideology transmitted through works of Art which preached that1 The world as it is is ugly The National Gallery in 1973 Mr Barzun examines art as religion as destroyer as redeemer and in relation to what he calls its temper science but never forgets the basic essential As he says the last word on ar.