By Ruth L. Saw (auth.)
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Extra resources for Aesthetics:: An Introduction
The notion of distance is easily misunderstood. Eric Shorter says of Jean Genet's play The Blacks, "... " This seems to me to be the antithesis of the notion of distance. Brecht was very anxious to counteract the sell-deception of fashionable audiences wallowing in emotion and supposing themselves to be most sensitively aware of the ills of the world when they were really indulging themselves in an orgy of sentimentality about the fate, say, of Marguerite. He set himseH firmly to demonstrate over and over again that what was being presented to them was a stage performance.
On the other hand, what we usually describe as an "artist" in dressmaking is one who, with great slashings of the scissors and with no regard for waste, makes an object that is pleasing in itself and in relation to a particular person and a particular occasion. There are performances in which the performer is simply placing the work of another artist before us, but we may also value their work as good in its own right. There are finished performances of bad plays as well as productions that faithfully render the work of the playwright.
The judges take this for granted and then go on to talk about shape and size of bloom, truth of color, and so on. The most important quality, health of plant, is just not mentioned. Nobody would show a plant that had not this essential, nobody would show a picture that lacked the essential qualities of painting. Its extra qualities qua novel, picture, play take it in and out of fashion, its basic quality qualifies it to go in and out of fashion. Sometimes its "extra" qualities are estimated so highly that we overlook its lack of basic quality.
Aesthetics:: An Introduction by Ruth L. Saw (auth.)