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13                                    Enjoying Art

There is no accounting for taste! What one person enjoys may leave another person cold, and that is quite OK: people come to a piece of art (painting, sculpture, dance, music ...) with different bodies of experience, and there's the point: as with creating art, there is something inside the person that the work links to --- or perhaps not: "It may be a famous piece but it didn't do anything for me."

        On the positive side, enjoyment may come at once or gradually --- "At first it left me a bit cold but after a few times, I got more of a feeling from it." The work of art doesn't change, but the viewer gradually finds what it is in themselves that the work relates to. In such a case, pleasure increases --- the work plus the viewer's interior notions yield joy.

    Here is Johannes Goethe: "Achievements of which we can see the merits, we have the seeds of in ourselves." (Von Verdiensten, die wir zu schatzen wissen, haben wir den Keim in uns.) He gets two parts right, but misses the pleasure angle; if we "see merit" in a work, we enjoy that.

 

 

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