Site-Specific Art Department, University of Applied Arts, Vienna
Instructor: Tim Richardson
A contemporary scene of Picturesque in the urban context of Athens.
The picturesque and the sublime: nature is attractive disorder, irregularity, variety and not obedience to a preordained pattern, suffocating uniformity, strict obedience to the laws of geometry.
Interpretation of nature felt in terms of freedom and not represented as pure rationality.
Schaftesburg is perhaps the first English thinker who believes that spontaneity and variety of natural spectacles is superior to the tamed nature, rationalized by human intervention.
when talking about the "pleasing horror of a wild place," it goes beyond the concept of the picturesque, it moves in a range of feelings in which attraction, admiration and fear melt together in the presence of terrible and magnificent natural spectacles.
Joseph Addison on one side is carried away by the pleasure aroused by the sublime vision of natural spectacles that induce the intellect to "meditate on eternity and infinity", and are superior to all the works with which art changes the nature; on the other side he says that the works of nature are much more attractive when they resemble those of art.
The category of the picturesque is not opposed to that of sublime.The word picturesque is not a philosophical term, but is used by writers and poets exclusively in relation to the natural landscape, a landscape or garden turned into a landscape painting. The distinction that will be the subject of philosophical speculation will be between the beautiful and the sublime. And the definition of beauty that is given by the essayists and philosophers in those years does not coincide with that of picturesque, although it shares some aspects.
Burke, Analysis of the beautiful. He rejects the definition of rationalist inspiration, or rather classic, and instead says that beauty is "the quality or those qualities of bodies that inspire love or some similar passion", and to love means spiritual pleasure induced by contemplation of the beautiful object; therefore rejects as attributes of beauty proportion, convenience and perfection.
According to Kant landscape garden and formal garden are both beautiful, and sublime is the darkest and more isolated area of the park.
Sublime is that which is absolutely great, especially the nature arouses ideas of the sublime in its chaos, in its biggest and wildest disorder and devastation but when greatness and power are present together. Nature is so sublime in those of its phenomena, in which intuition includes the idea of the infinite.
Thomas Gainsborough, Artist with a Claude glass. William turner, The east and Ruins.