From the President
Springtime in Beijing was, this year, too short. Short and very busy. Some of our good friends visited here, including Ken-ichi Sasaki, Curtis, Carter and Ales Erjavec, and I was very happy to meet them. I will enjoy seeing all of you in between the regular meetings of our Congresses.
Recently, I have attended several conferences in China and elsewhere. In early April, I went to Hangzhou for a symposium on the theoretic significance of Chinese ink-wash painting hosted by Pan Gongkai. We had a very good discussion there on the famous West Lake garden, a place traditionally called "Paradise on Earth" in China. Our friends, Curtis Carter, Richard Shusterman and Peng Feng, gave excellent presentations there. We also met other scholars including François Jullien and Cheng Chung-ying. Two topics discussed were especially interesting and deserve mention here: first, the physical brushwork as the traces of human action to signify the feeling and emotion, or states of mind of the painters, and second, the brushwork as the evidence of the painter's character as a morally exemplary human being. These two concepts represent two interrelated ways of thinking about and interpreting Chinese ink-wash painting.
A little later in April, I went to Chengdu (The city where many of us met in 2006. I hope you still remember this city where the Executive Committee meeting of IAA voted to approve Beijing as the venue for the 2010 IAA Congress). At this 2014 Chengdu conference, two key concepts attracted the attention of the participants. First, contemporary literary theory and secondly, its trans-cultural travel. "Contemporary" and "contemporarity" are important concepts because people are considering the possibilities to go beyond the post-modern and post-modernism. The introduction of so many different theories into China has contributed to confusion among Chinese scholars. They now wish to return to their own ways of living and artistic practices. Their aim is to find possibilities for focusing on their own practices while continuing to introduce the theories from abroad. Secondly, the matter of the trans-cultural travel of theories is important. During the 20th century, many theories have become influential internationally. Most of them originated from Europe and became internationally influential by way of their reception and development in the USA. Now, as theories travel to China, it is hoped that their reception and development here can become theoretically significant and fruitful in the future as well.
Jale Erzen & Raffaele Milani (eds.) Nature and the City. Beauty is Taking on a New Form. International Yearbook mof Aesthetics. Volume 17. Sassari: Edzione Edes 2013
The city, too, is landscape. We can leave it by going into nature exchanging the urban for the rural, but we can also enter the city to live within the architecture and contemplate its forms. Every architectural structure is a landscape and promotes an educational or paedeumatic relationship between the spirit and the environment. Our gaze and our bodies activate a certain way of contemplating that promotes the interchange between the external perception of the physical world and an internal seeing, which is the psychic perception of the visual image. There is a close relationship between the aesthetic experience of the natural environment and that of the urban landscape. In the same way that humankind lives on the earth so, too, it lives in the city.
About the Editors
Jale Nejdet Erzen (izmir University), painter and art historian, publications on Ottoman architecture, painting and aesthetics. Vice president of IAA. Founder and long-time president of Turkish Association of Aesthetics, SAN ART. Affiliations, Middle East Technical University-Ankara and izmir University Izmir Turkey. Recent publications on urban aesthetics, contemporary art.
Raffaele Milani is Professor of Aesthetics and the author of numerous books, including The Aesthetic Categories, The Adventure of Landscape and The Faces of Grace. Philosophy, Art, and Nature. Director of the Laboratory of Research on the Cities (Institute for Advanced Studies), University of Bologna. Member of the European Commission at the French Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development on: De la connaissance des paysages à l’action paysagère.
The Journal of Aesthetics and Phenomenology aims to encourage and promote research in aesthetics that draws inspiration from the phenomenological tradition as broadly understood, where “phenomenology” is inclusive of, but goes beyond the limits of, intellectual practices associated with the tradition and its well-known representative thinkers. Unique in the English speaking world, the journal welcomes scholarly articles written in a phenomenological vein as well as analyses of aesthetic phenomena by researchers working on phenomenology within analytic philosophy.
The field of the Journal of Aesthetics and Phenomenology is further defined by its close connections with the arts and culture, including the reality of human experience and its environment. Besides philosophical rigor, the journal puts emphasis on both creativity of ideas and precision of language. It provides a platform for new innovative ideas crossing the boundaries of both philosophical traditions and traditionally accepted fields of research in aesthetics.
The IAA website is currently under construction. As a result of the construction some links are temporary not functional. The full content will appear again soon.
My apologies for the inconvenience,
Jos de Mul (web editor)
Jos de Mul and Renée van de Vall (eds.) Gimme Shelter: Global Discourses in Aesthetics. International Yearbook of Aesthetics. Volume 15. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2013
Gimme Shelter. Global discourses in aesthetics contains a series of reflections on the impact of globalization on the arts and the aesthetic reflection on the arts. The authors – fifteen distinguished aestheticians from all over the world - discuss a variety of aesthetic questions brought forth by the aforementioned process of globalization. How do artistic practices and aesthetic experiences change in response to these developments? How should we articulate these changes on the theoretical level? When reflections on the significance of art and aesthetic experiences can no longer pretend to be universal, is it still possible to lay claim to a wider validity than merely that of one’s own particular culture? What type of vocabulary allows for mutual – dialogical or even polylogical – exchanges and understandings when different traditions meet, without obliterating local differences? Is there a possibility for a creative re-description of globalization? And is there a meaning of ‘the global’ that cannot be reduced to universalism and unification? Can we seek shelter in a legitimate way?
About the editors
Jos de Mul is professor of Man and Culture at Erasmus University Rotterdam. He has also taught at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) and Fudan Univer- sity (Shanghai), and has been visiting fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. From 2007 until 2010 he was the President of the International Associa- tion of Aesthetics. His work is on the interface of philosophical anthropology (and its history), aesthetics, and philosophy of technology. English publications include: Romantic Desire in (Post)Modern Art and Philosophy (State University of New York Press, 1999), The Tragedy of Finitude. Dilthey’s Hermeneutics of Life (Yale Univer- sity Press, 2004), Cyberspace Odyssey. Towards a Virtual Ontology and Anthropology (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010), and Destiny Domesticated. The Rebirth of Tragedy out of the Spirit of Technology (State University of New York Press, 2013). His work has been translated in more than a dozen languages. An extended CV and publication list is available at www.demul.nl.
Renée van de Vall is professor in Art and Media at Maastricht University where she is chair of the Department of Arts & Literature. She has been president of the Dutch Association for Aesthetics (2002-2006) and is currently Dutch delegate in the Executive Committee of the IAA. Her research interests are philosophical aesthetics and the phenomenology of contemporary visual art and spectatorship. She currently leads an interdisciplinary research project on the theory and ethics of the conservation of contemporary art. Some recent publications are At the Edges of Vision. A Phenomenological Aesthetics of Contemporary Spectatorship (2008); ‘A Penny For Your Thoughts. Brain-scans and the Mediation of Subjective Embodi- ment’ in R. van de Vall & R. Zwijnenberg (eds.) The Body Within: Art, Medicine and Visualisation (2009); and ‘Towards a Theory and Ethics for the Conservation of Contemporary Art’ in Art d’aujourd’hui – patrimoine de demain. Conservation et restauration des oeuvres contemporaines. (2009).