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Affirming solitude: Heidegger and Blanchot on art

Peters, Gary (2013) Affirming solitude: Heidegger and Blanchot on art. EIDOS, 19. p. 11.

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The following reflections are intended as a preliminary to a more extended and
in-depth series of case studies, focused analyses of actual artworks, and the issues
arising from their particularity within what will be described here as a Heideggerian
post-aesthetic aesthetics. The essay is not written from the perspective of a professional
or academic philosopher or of a practising artist (even though I am one), neither fields of
which have sufficiently engaged with the existential and aesthetic predicament sketched
out below. Thus, the attraction of both Heidegger and Blanchot is not just related to
their well-known discussions of inbetween-ness, but, more essentially, to the peculiarly
in-between location of their own thought and trajectory of thinking: Heidegger from
“out of” philosophy “drawn” towards art; Blanchot from within the space of literature
towards the exteriority of ontological thinking. The intention is to identify similarities
and differences in their thought, but this is only perceived as relevant to the extent that
it allows an initial reassessment of a de-subjectivized existential and aesthetic mode
of thinking that has been largely abandoned by academic philosophy and art practice
alike (albeit for very different reasons). If nothing else, the hope is that a different voice
might be heard in the clamorous exchange between philosopher and artists, one that
is sensitive to the complex predicament of the artist in a post-Heidegerrian world, and
which above all remains faithful to the project of the artist and the artwork in the face
of the philosophical valorization of “Art”.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Subjects: N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
School/Department: School of Humanities
URI: https://ray.yorksj.ac.uk/id/eprint/382

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