“Without a theory to go with it, it’s impossible to see an artwork” – this paper intends to discuss the provocation posed by Tom Wolfe. His thesis simply put: art itself had become little more than a crutch for art theorists. Art’s purpose had become to illustrate theories. It is my intent to argue that his statement is but a symptom of a displacement that took place way back in the Early German Romanticism: there, still in the 19th century, Theory conquers philosophically its own autonomy. Ever since, those who have occupied themselves of its practice (be they ‘philosophers of art’, ‘theoreticians’ or ‘critics’) seem to have strived for a sole purpose: to extend the privileges thus far granted to Theory. The excesses of the Age of Theory would culminate, as we now know, in widespread theses stating ‘the end of art’. At last, Theory reveals its most ambitious project in the writings of contemporary analytical philosopher Arthur Danto: his philosophical work, a philosophical discourse about art, offers itself as an artwork in its own right.
|Keywords:||Philosophy, Art, Criticism|
PhD Student, Department of Philosophy, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Graduate Student, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Engenharia Civil (PPGEC), Centro Federal de Educação Tecnológica de Minas Gerais (CEFET-MG), Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil