Full Text

aesthetic property

Subject Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art » Aesthetics

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405106795.2004.x


A esthetics A quality that contributes to determining the aesthetic value of an artwork. Such properties can be subject either to positive evaluation, such as being beautiful, charming, elegant, sublime, balanced, graceful, or majestic, or to negative evaluation, such as being ugly, boring, clumsy, garish, or lifeless. There can, of course, be beautiful depictions of ugly objects or lifeless depictions of beautiful ones. Some aesthetic qualities, such as being sad or joyful, can be non-evaluative. It is widely agreed that we require a special sensitivity, “taste,” to perceive them. Aesthetic properties are the ultimate sources of “aesthetic value,” and contribute to determining the nature of artworks. Positively aesthetic properties make artifacts into works of art and figure in a subject's account of why an artwork pleases him. Some philosophers argue that as emergent properties aesthetic properties supervene on non-aesthetic properties, but others insist that aesthetic properties must be seen as entirely independent of non-aesthetic properties. “I imagined explaining my emotional response to the painting by pointing out some of its aesthetic properties; the colours, although pastel, are warm rather than faded, the faces of the saints ‘sweet and gentle.’” Mothersill, Beauty Restored ... log in or subscribe to read full text

Log In

You are not currently logged-in to Blackwell Reference Online

If your institution has a subscription, you can log in here:


     Forgotten your password?

Find out how to subscribe.

Your library does not have access to this title. Please contact your librarian to arrange access.

[ access key 0 : accessibility information including access key list ] [ access key 1 : home page ] [ access key 2 : skip navigation ] [ access key 6 : help ] [ access key 9 : contact us ] [ access key 0 : accessibility statement ]

Blackwell Publishing Home Page

Blackwell Reference Online ® is a Blackwell Publishing Inc. registered trademark
Technology partner: Semantico Ltd.

Blackwell Publishing and its licensors hold the copyright in all material held in Blackwell Reference Online. No material may be resold or published elsewhere without Blackwell Publishing's written consent, save as authorised by a licence with Blackwell Publishing or to the extent required by the applicable law.

Back to Top