am listening to Jay Bernstein tapes and reading the transcript as well. specific tape is 3rd October 07.

  • it is v difficult
  • it is exciting me as there might be an answer here tantalisoing
  • what does that mean in Lacanian terms its some kind of object either petit or a?
  • but still exciting
  • bernstein seems to be talking about the cognitive experience oflooking at a painting
  • i can compare it too my exerience of looking at a Wols painting and an Otto Dix painting
  • in berlin
  • I am still trying to figure it out
  • both involved that circular looking reflecting and looking round and round a time based process with (pat looking informing thinking and vice versa – preetenshus!)
  • psbsks that the imagination apprehends
  • andApprehension is a work of passive synthesis – preparing the intuition for conceptualization by seeking out both its unitary character and the crucial discriminating characteristics of that unitary presentation.
  • so that when I look at a painting I am undertaking a mental process towards producing a concept and I do this by looking for unity and looking at the individual characteristics of…
  • so eg looking at a pollock painting I am looking for a coherence  a unity if the many many marks
  • looking for significant (Pat wy are they sgnificant?) pattternigs relations movement
  • Pat yes that is certainly true
  • bsks that this is what we do with any object inthe world anyway
  • pat is he saying that looking at art is a kindo f practice for looking at non-art?
  • bsks first we have to apprehend the object before we understand it
  • is this what the child goes thorugh when it istarts looking at things in the world.
  • maybe one can see the pleasure in aesthetic looking cos it would have evolved cos apprehending and unerstanding objects in the world would havehad an adaptive function
  • bs that the 3rd critique is about the way the imagination and the understanding work together
  • oh wow bsks it is a matter of taking in the manifold = complexity and beginning the process of finding it as one
  • ps is there an element of the doing of this process being an adaptive trait and therefore pleasurable (look up)
  • which explains why we put so much effort into it and why we prize it??
  • bernstein says in his lecture that on looking at any object in the world we have to go through this imaginative synthetic work and that in doing this work we are preparing for the understanding of the object
  • could this account explain the emperors new clothes ie in that it is a process which involves our apprehension of an pobjectover time before coming to an understanding of it .. if this was adaptively made rewarding then maybe we would go through the process even if the aesthetic object were in itself worth less 0 – or better that the worth of an aesthetic object lies in ithe length of tie it takes us to scan and try to reah understanding – this would account for the fact that art tends to be status related – ie who would have the time to put into this contemplation if they were not rich and leisured
  • is it then complexity that matter – often thought so.
  • also (pat) think about the act of making art rather than of contemplating it – it also is a process over time – it also is a series of contemplations and judgements would this explain the  pleasure involved in making art

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