With-In: Towards an Aesth/Ethics of Prepositions
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What does art do to me as the space and spirit where I am? Inspired by Marcuse, art for me appears as a place of a manifested utopia where the future and past encounter each other, a place that transfigures the space where I am. The chapter title “with-in” tries to delineate how the one lies in the other, the perceiving/knowing of oneself in the environment and the environment become aware of itself within the human. Reflecting about the Triune Spirit as a liberator of nature, the Spirit appears as a “being-of-the-one-in-or-with-the-other.” What is true for theology might also become true for environmental arts: Not propositional knowing but prepositional knowing is at core. As God appears as the God of the Here and Now within lived spaces of creation also environmental arts emerge as skills to manifest in space how the one exists and lives in, with and for the other and how the one emerges out of the past into the present and future. Artworks might then be regarded as products from human skills to manifest how the one lives within and for the other and how past and future encounter each other. Environmental art rather advocates empathy and respect than commodification and utilitarian usage. Can art, in comparison with technology, assist in placing the artefact at the nexus between the material reproduction of our daily life, our relationship to nature, our social relations and our world view and belief, and serve as a critical and constructive mediator? Can its erotic beauty and its capacity for neo-animating produce a countervailing power that resists and overcomes commodification and alienation?