Art's Visual Efficacy: The Case of Anthony Forge's Abelam Corpus

Res: Anthropology and Aesthetics 67:78-93 (2016/2017)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
This paper addresses the question of whether a general method is capable of accommodating the vast array of contexts in which art objects are studied. I propose a framework for such a general method, which is, however, limited to a specific research task: reconstructing the circumstances under which a culturally and/or temporally distant or “exotic” art object becomes interesting (or menacing) to look at. The proposed framework is applied to evaluate Anthony Forge’s essays on the visual art of the Abelam. The essays played a central role in the rekindling of anthropological interest in visual art, but they have also been subject to criticism for forcing on Abelam art Western categories that distort the role art objects play in the Abelam world. Assessing the corpus in terms of the proposed framework allows me to exemplify the main differences between a pragmatic and a semantic approach to gaining access to the efficacy of culturally or temporally distant art.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2019-10-01
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
144 ( #27,204 of 50,193 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
60 ( #9,367 of 50,193 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.