Art, Aesthetics, Criticism

Aesthetic Engagement Download as RTF file (29KB)
Analyses the nature of aesthetic engagement with a painting through a specific discussion of the work of Mark Rothko in the Tate Gallery, London

Anish Kapoor at the Hayward Gallery 1998 Download as Word document(33KB)
A critical review of this exhibition of Kapoors work

Art is not a message Download as RTF file (28KB)
This talk is meant to express an idea. The idea is that works of art are not, characteristically, acts of communication by means of which artists seek to convey a message to those who encounter the work. To think that they are such messages is to confuse art with a group of its minor genres: the allegory, the fable, the parable.

Classicism and Romanticism  
A brief introduction to the contrasting visions of Classicism and Romanticism, guided by M H Abrams, The Mirror and the Lamp (1953) and invoking the names of Wordsworth, Coleridge, Oscar Wilde, T S Eliot and Bertolt Brecht, among others.

English Formalism and Russian Formalism: Clive Bell and Viktor Shklovsky Download as RTF file(34KB)
This essay examines the nature of aesthetic and literary Formalism, especially as defended in the work of Clive Bell and Viktor Shklovsky. It seeks to show how very different are the formalisms of these two near-contemporary theorists and practitioners.

The Fleeting (The Evanescent) Download as RTF file (13KB)
No abstract

Human Nature: The Human Mind and Human Art Download as RTF file(20KB)
A short introduction to thinking about the relation between Human Nature and Human Art by means of thinking about how the Human Mind works, both in response to external stimuli and independently of them. Some implications for understanding the Arts (especially poetry and painting) and Arts teaching are indicated.

Isms: Expressionism, Impressionism, Naturalism, Realism, Surrealism  
A sketch of movements in art, contrasting Expressionism with Impressionism; Naturalism with Realism. Argues that the - Isms are permanent possibilities of artistic expression rather than just historically bounded "Movements"

Mimesis and Katharsis/Catharsis  
No abstract

Morality and Art: The Claims of F.R. Leavis  
Introduces a discussion of the large topic of Morality and Art through a close reading of some passages in F R Leavis's book, "The Great Tradition"

Religion and Art Download as Word document(30KB)
No abstract

Saatchi Art: the Usual Questions Download as Word document(24KB)
Remarks on the work of Damien Hirst

Space for the Imagination Download as RTF file(31KB)
This is an edited version of an opening of year talk given in 1994 to students on the MA Language, the Arts and Education programme at the University of Sussex , England

Structuralism and Narrative Download as RTF file(25KB)
A very short introduction to structuralist accounts of fairy tales, myths and narrative fiction in the work of Vladimir Propp, Claude Levi -Strauss, and others.

The Sublime  
No abstract

Tradition and Creativity: T S Eliot "Tradition and the Individual Talent"  
Exposition and commentary on the key themes of T S Eliot's essay "Tradition and the Individual Talent" in which comparisons with structuralist understandings of languages are made and bearing on educational debates discussed.

Transient Beauties Download as Word document(12KB)
Remarks on the beauty of rainbows, butterflies and the human face

The Turner Prize 1997: Gillian Wearing, Cornelia Parker, Angela Bulloch, Christine Borland Download as Word document(62KB)
This essay reflects on the Turner Prize 1997 on the basis of a viewing of a Channel 4 one hour documentary screened on the night of the Prize award (2 December 1997) and a half day visit to the Prize exhibition at the Tate Gallery, London

Twenty concepts for aesthetics - A lecture Download as RTF file(45KB)
Quite literally, an assembly of twenty concepts reckoned useful for thinking about a range of aesthetic questions

What do artists do? Download as RTF file(37KB)
Argues for a central, normative account of Art using notions of (1) its material basis and (2) its medium constituted by traditions and conventions, along with contrasting notions of (3) use of material and medium and (4) engagement with them. This conceptual apparatus allows one to identify the shortcomings of at least some "Conceptual Art" and also locates the specific Problem of the Novel as an art form

Wittgensteinian Aesthetics Download as RTF document(21KB)
Review discussion of David Best, Feeling and Reason in the Arts. London: George Allan and Unwin 1985