0
   

Nietzsche On Art- PLEASE INTERPRET

 
 
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 08:10 pm
I'm reading Human, All Too Human and I am confused by N's contradictory passages. In #155 and #163 he emphasizes the hard-working artist but in #210 he values a rather spontaneous artist.

155: "In truth, the good artist`s or thinker`s imagination is continually producing things good, mediocre, and bad, but his power of judgment, highly sharpened and practiced, rejects, selects, joins together... All great men were great workers, untiring not only in invention but also in rejecting, sifting, reforming, arranging.:
163: " Do not talk about giftedness, inborn talents! One can name great men of al kinds who were very little gifted. They acquired greatness, became geniuses through qualities which no one who knew what they were would boast of: they all possessed that seriousness of the efficient workman which first learns to construct the parts properly before it ventures to fashion a great whole..."

#210: "... their creations appear and fall from the tree on a quiet autumn evening unprecipitately, in due time, not quickly pushed aside by something new. The wish to create incessantly is vulgar, betraying jealousy, envy, and ambition. If one is something, one does not actually need to do anything—and nevertheless does a great deal. There is a type higher than the "productive" man."
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Question • Score: 0 • Views: 2,761 • Replies: 15
No top replies

 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 08:33 pm
@yumyumshisha,
Hmmm.

I'm going to have to consider this in the morning, when football practice isn't almost over and the spaghetti isn't abubble on the stove and ten other things aren't calling for my attention...... but......

I think most people misunderstand the labor of creativity.

The important thing to consider in these passages is the word "appear" (number 210).

Someone on A2K (naively, in my opinion) said the other day something to the effect that "advertising people sit around for weeks and then throw something together in the last few hours to present to the client". Their context was that these people aren't really creative, they're lazy and indulgent and only think they have good ideas.

Being creative is a lot of work. There is a lot of "stewing" involved. The idea appears to fall from a tree but a lot of thought (hours, weeks, months, years) has gone into the idea before pencil ever hits paper.

The creative process builds on experience and experiments and years of working at it. It's a skill.

To the uninitiated (the uncreative) it looks spontaneous.

It isn't.

I think that's what the writer is getting at.
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 08:50 pm
@yumyumshisha,
I think Nietzsche is using the term "artist" metaphorically. And I don't see a direct correlation between the first two passages and the last. At any rate, Nietzsche isn't talking art here.
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 08:50 pm
@yumyumshisha,
Nietzsche's major work was Geneologyof Morals.

Nietzsche aspired to a return to the Greek value system and was enamored with the idea that Greeks had used their religion more or less to free themselves of guilt and introspection while Christians in his view used theirs to enslave themselves to them. The logic was perfectly good; it was the starting assumptions, including Darwinism, which were inadequate.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:00 pm
@thack45,
The first passage says "artist or thinker". I think he doesn't see much difference between the two. I don't either.
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:01 pm
@gungasnake,
Yes, that's right. Because that is clearly what the OP was talking about. Thanks for the ad hominem though.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:01 pm
@gungasnake,
What does that have to do with the passages posted?

I'm not trying to be nasty, I'm trying to understand your reply.
0 Replies
 
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:12 pm
@boomerang,
I agree that he makes no distinction. But the way I read the terms are as metaphors (and so no distinction is necessary) for natuarlly discerning people. The second passage seems to go on to describe people who learn to be discerning.
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:29 pm
@thack45,
And the OP seems to use the third passage out of context from the first two - although I'm only guessing. I'll admit I haven't read Human, All Too Human.
0 Replies
 
yumyumshisha
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 09:55 pm
@boomerang,
My friend boomerang, thanks for replying. I'm sorry for asking you to clarify, but I'd like you to reply because you seem among the more helpful repliers (unlike gungasake- wtf?)

I understand that in your opinion- "being creative is a lot of work... and takes hours ,weeks, months, years." That is what also Nietzsche states in his passages #155 and #163.

But then in #210 he does a 180 and says- "One does not actually need to do anything—and nevertheless does a great deal" He says that the spontaneous artist who doesn't work is "a type higher than the productive man."

He even speaks negatively about the "wish to create" describing it as " vulgar, betraying jealousy, envy, and ambition." And although you said the idea appears to fall from a tree, what Nietzsche really says is- the creation appears on the tree.

How to resolve the contradiction?!?!
thack45
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 10:11 pm
I've tagged this thread: philosophy and Nietzsche. Hopefully you'll get some replies from members more familiar with the subject. One member, jgweed, is quite knowledgable in this area. I hope he's still active here, as I'd like to see his opinion...
0 Replies
 
yumyumshisha
 
  1  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2011 11:08 pm
@yumyumshisha,
My Philosophy Major friend resolved it well:

The contradiction is superficial, and is about the seriousness of _attitude_ with which a good artist/thinker goes about his business, not about whether Nietzsche values born geniuses over made ones.

It is not about PRODUCTION at all: "In truth, the good artist's or thinker's imagination is continually PRODUCING things good, mediocre, and bad..." That is to say, it is not the point to produce, because the PRODUCT can be good, or MEDIOCRE, or BAD, even from a GOOD thinker or artist.

It is about the seriousness of the PROCESS. It is the SERIOUSNESS of the "efficient workman's" thinking process that Nietzsche values, not his PRODUCTION. He speaks of great men having been great WORKERS, not in PRODUCTION, but in "untiring invention, rejecting, sifting, reforming, arranging." What makes a good artist or thinker is his good POWER OF JUDGMENT (please tell me Nietzsche's word here is URTEILSKRAFT). Men acquire greatness through discipline and refinement of this power, however "naturally gifted" they seem. "There is a type higher than the 'PRODUCTIVE' man," than the man who MERELY produces work.

What is vulgar? Raw or inborn talent? No. "The wish to create (i.e. PRODUCE) incessantly".

When Nietzsche talks about not having to DO anything yet DOING a great deal, it means not having to PRODUCE any WORK but yet having been a GENIUS in the thought process, the true CREATIVE process, not the jealous, envious, and ambitious need to MAKE something all the time as a showcase for vanity, or as a means of PROOF for lesser men.

WHEN the creation of the good artist finally does come about, after the seriousness and anguish of creation, then it SEEMS to others that "... their creations appear and fall from the tree on a quiet autumn evening unprecipitately [sic], in due time, not quickly pushed aside by something new."

By no means is this sort of creation spontaneous or carefree. Picasso's or Dali's work seems spontaneous and carefree to us, but could they have created it, would it have had any meaning whatsoever, without having first learned to "construct the parts properly before it ventures to fashion a great whole..."? No.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Aug, 2011 09:42 am
@yumyumshisha,
This is just my take on it. I'm not familiar with the book so I'm just taking the passages out of context and putting my own spin on it.

The work of creativity is done in the imagination. People don't see this process -- the "artist" appears to be doing nothing; they aren't making anything, but they are in fact doing a great deal. They're working though the problems and deciding on a path that will lead to creating something.

To the ones who think the artist isn't doing anything, the creation appears to "fall from the trees" spontaneously.

He doesn't speak of the "wish to create" as vulgar, but the "wish to create incessantly" as vulgar.

I'm sure that given time I could come up with a lot of examples but Thomas Kincade (the painter) springs to mind first off, and people like Glen Beck (the commentator) or some of the writers who crank out a new, passable, book ever few months.

The part that trips me up is this...

Quote:
If one is something, one does not actually need to do anything—and nevertheless does a great dea


.... because I can't think of anyone who does nothing (in the strict sense of the word nothing).

Maybe he's talking about philosophers who might appear to not be doing anything while actually doing a great deal: introducing thoughts and opinions for discussion or contemplation (which is not nothing).
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Aug, 2011 10:58 am
@boomerang,
Good post, Boomerang. I agree that truly expressive art is not cranked out by living factories (and Warhol does come to mind).
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Wed 24 Aug, 2011 06:15 pm
@JLNobody,
Thank you!

I confess to being a big fan of Warhol. I also confess to being a huge fan of pop culture, industrial design, and all types of iconography so I guess that Warhol hits a lot of my elements.

I think there can be real beauty in mass produced items. Show me a beautiful automobile, especially a muscle car from the 60s, and watch me melt. And this from a girl who hates to drive. (My current car is 19 years old and only has 160,000 miles on it and most of that was Mr. B when he needed a "junker".)

Art you can use.....

<sigh>
j-clayton
 
  1  
Reply Sat 22 Nov, 2014 06:02 pm
@boomerang,
Warhol made some neat conceptual jumps , lateral thinking if you like , but became rather repetetive . Hit the button for a lot of us of the hippie generation but leaves us a bit non-plussed now at the huge prices his " commodities " go for . Ironic . He never had that continual development of Picasso , Stella or .....Nietsche .
Sure , there can be real beauty in an automobile , as there can be in a cigarette butt , see Oldenburg .
As Neitsche also says , keep you feet on the ground and don't become divorced from the earth ( more or less ) . Human defining , lasting art comes up through the earth , decanted in the mind/consciousness and back to the earth in realization . That is creativity , and I think is pretty well universal , eg Basho .
The mind , of course has to be free of prejudices , intellectualization and , of course political correctness . It is a lifetime occupation .
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

 
  1. Forums
  2. » Nietzsche On Art- PLEASE INTERPRET
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 08/20/2019 at 12:25:14