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Speculative Art HistoriesAnalysis at the Limits$
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Sjoerd van Tuinen

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781474421041

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474421041.001.0001

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Impossible! Bergson after Duchamp after Caillois

Impossible! Bergson after Duchamp after Caillois

(p.245) 13 Impossible! Bergson after Duchamp after Caillois
Speculative Art Histories

Sarah Kolb

Edinburgh University Press

Beyond traditional art historical practice and its haptophobia with experimental, subjectivist, or speculative methods, what we have already begun to learn from Marcel Duchamp can be further established with the philosophies Henri Bergson and Roger Caillois. An up-to-date philosophy of art might thus be one that combines the potentialities of intuition and a bold imagination with the need for precision and strict controls. In the light of that ‘logic of the imaginary’ which Caillois brought onto the scene with his ‘diagonal sciences’, art and its attendant histories and theories are no longer about substantive messages, but rather about questioning their contingent effects and affects upon a particular environment or beholder. Seen from this angle, philosophy of art might have to deal with unstoppable transformations of dominant structures of knowledge, outpacing self-referential interpretations in favour of a protean field of reciprocal actions and attractions, which can be cultivated by anyone willing to join the game.

Keywords:   Henri Bergson, Marcel Duchamp, Roger Caillois, Avant-gardism, Concept Art, Ready-made, Diagonal Sciences, Transdisciplinarity, Imagination, Postmodernism

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