Aesthetics for Birds

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

April 6, 2016
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Conference on Philosophy and Theater

April 22nd, 2016 at University of Mississippi: Occasioning Philosophy A celebration of philosophy and theater on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death The American Society for Aesthetics is pleased to award $3000 to support the conference, “Occasioning Philosophy: A Celebration of Philosophy and Theater on the occasion of the 400th Anniversary of Shakespeare’s Death.” The conference will be held on Friday, April 22, 2016. The conference, hosted by the University of Mississippi, is co-sponsored by Mississippi State University and the University of Mississippi. ASA member Kristin Boyce (Mississippi State University) is the co-organizer of the conference, with Donovan Wishon (Philosophy, University of Mississippi). The conference will include talks by Noel Carroll (CUNY Graduate Center), John Gibson (University of Louisville), Kristin Gjesdal (Temple University), James Hamilton (Kansas State University), and Paul Woodruff (University of Texas at Austin). Responses will be provided by Kristin Boyce, Eric Vivier (English, Mississippi State) and … Continue reading

March 10, 2015
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Street Art Conference Scrapbook

Thanks to Nick Riggle for a terrific Artists Panel featuring Tatyana Fazlalizadeh ELBOW-TOE HOTTEA Leon Reid IV Thursday’s Snow-pocalypse and Pratt officially closing two hours prior could not deter these brave folks from the appointed Artists Panel The Super Sucklord & Roy “I don’t walk around proving math theorems” Cook.   Winner of the Farthest Traveled Philosopher Award: Ulrich Blanche Even Nick Riggle’s Note-Taking is Stylish  Keynote Speaker Allison Young politely demonstrates that she knows about Street Art than everyone else in the room combined  The Risky, Dangerous, & Totally Audacious Tony Chackal (also pictured Shelby Moser, Mary-Beth Willard, Sondra Bacharach, Chris Nagel, Christiane Merritt) Session Dictator Christy Mag Uidhir’s Authoritarian Arm of Efficient Q&A Doom Early Bird Attendees Enjoying Chris Nagel’s Saturday Opener Organizer Nick Riggle Haunted by the Image of the Already Paid-For Conference Poster with No Listed Talk Times A satiated Christy Mag Uidhir with an enraged … Continue reading

March 10, 2015
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Street Art Conference Wrap-Up: Pt. 2

One issue that kept coming up throughout the conference was the Illegality Condition for Street Art–whether or not works of street art require there to be (in fact if not also in belief) some (regularly enforced) law against the creation of such. Here’s what I took away from the various debates about illegality. 1. If there is an illegality condition on Street Art, it will most plausibly be had by Street Art (Form) rather than Street Art (Content)–See previous post on Two Kinds of Street Art. 2. Any worthwhile illegality condition won’t be grounded in mere illegality per se. Instead, the illegality condition must be in terms of what the relevant illegality reflects, speaks to, stands for, or purports to track: i.e., the attitudes and beliefs of the lawmakers and law enforcers, especially those concerning the relationship and tensions between public and private spheres, community rights and the proprietary rights … Continue reading

March 10, 2015
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Street Art Conference Wrap-Up Pt. 1

The Street Art Conference was a rousing success. Despite the winter storm on Thursday, March 5th, seriously hampering audience attendance for the otherwise terrific Artists Panel, the conference had a high turn out overall, with a fantastic turn out for Allison Young’s Keynote Address on Friday at Pratt and for the presentations and closing reception on Saturday at NYU. For this to mean much of anything, however, requires that along the way we learned as a result something philosophically interesting about either Street Art itself or the enquiry therein. I think we managed to do just that. What I Learned at the Street Art Conference Two Kinds of Street Art When folks talk about “street art” they typically employ (often frustratingly moving between) one of the following two senses: Street Art (Form)—Art in some Street Medium Works having certain formal, compositional, material conditions mediated by certain contexts or relations (spatial, … Continue reading

March 7, 2015
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Live Blogging the Street Art Conference: Day Three

 Philosophy’s Street Cred: Limits & Interest Rates The conference goes multi-borough today moving from Brooklyn’s Pratt to Manhattan’s NYU. Accusations of selling-out no doubt to follow.  “Signature Counterexamples to Institutional Theories of Art” Christopher Nagel (Minnesota) Chris will be discussing how certain works of graffiti, specifically those of the heavily stylized signatory sort (tags, throw-ups), constitute counterexamples to Institutional Theory of Art. Chris discusses the primary/secondary presentation distinction and claims graffiti writing’s primary presentation is to graffiti subcultures and so not to an artworld public.  “Saving the Writing on the Wall: Two Models for Street Art and its Preservation” Alison Lanier, Angela Sun, & Erich Hatala Matthes (Wellesley College) Alison, Angela, & Erich explore the various preservation models one might want to adopt for street art.  Adopting the performance model would claim that the preservation of street is motivated by preservation of embodiments/evidence of the performance, which has long since … Continue reading

March 6, 2015
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Live Blogging the Street Art Conference: Day Two

Day Two: Gleaming the Cube “Political Art & Street Art Definitions” Christiane Merritt (Washington University, St. Louis) Merritt argues that adopting the exemplar approach to the conditions for being street art results in certain kinds of street art (political street art) being needlessly ruled out as such. She begins by discussing some prima facie plausible conditions for street art: Site Publicity: the work must be located in a public area Audience Publicity: the public must be the proper audience Illegality: the work must not be authorized or sanctioned by the relevant authority with legal standing Merritt uses the work of Tatyana Fazlalizadeh & Guerilla Girls to challenge both site and audience publicity conditions and the work of Gran Fury to call out the illegality condition. What these all have in common, of course, is their political content.  “Street Art & Deception” Shelby Moser (Kent) Moser will be focusing on what … Continue reading

March 5, 2015
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Live Blogging Street Art Conference: Day One

Shitty Winter Weather, Awesome Artist Panel Thursday, March 5th 5:45pm The conference kicked off today with the Arists Panel featuring ELBOW-TOE, HOTTEA, Leon Reid IV, and Tatyana Fazlalizadeh with the discussion lead by fellow organizer Nick Riggle. Reid’s work takes a clever, playful, and a touch fantastical perspective on the otherwise unremarkable ordinary objects one expects to encounter while walking on the street (street signs, lamp posts, newspaper dispensers, bus benches, etc.). Reid also discusses his transition from Street Artist to studio-based Commissioned Public Artist. ELBOW-TOE’s work is more traditionally oriented (large wheatpasted linocuts and layered murals affixed to brick walls, text graffiti on industrial doors).  HOTTEA works with geometric forms of block text suggestive of depth, most strikingly when placed onto a chain link fence. His text work is not restricted to tagging (the word often carries political weight) nor is his work with geometric forms and depth confined … Continue reading

September 6, 2013
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Conference on Evaluative Perception

Good News: Over the last 10 years or so there has been a noticeable increase in the number of truly outstanding conferences dedicated to issues either within Philosophical Aesthetics or at its various points of intersection with other philosophical subfields.  Bad News: These conferences are increasingly, if not now almost exclusively, based in the UK or Continental Europe. As a result, US-based Aestheticians, at least those without obscene personal travel allowances, find themselves unable to do more than stare with aching longing at all the shiny conference programs filled with philosophical delights just out of reach. Case in point: the upcoming three-day conference on Evaluative Perception at University of Glasgow (Sept. 15-18) featuring keynote talks from: Robert Audi (Notre Dame)Dominic Lopes (British Colombia)Jack Lyons (Arkansas)Sarah McGrath (Princeton)Paul Noordhof (York)Susanna Siegel (Harvard)Kathleen Stock (Sussex)Dustin Stokes (Utah)Pekka Väyrynen (Leeds)Conference details can be found here

July 12, 2013
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Holy shit! The 2013 Annual ASA Looks Fucking Awesome!

My heartiest congratulations to the programming committee for the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Aesthetics (Oct. 30th-Nov. 2nd, San Diego) as they’ve managed to put together not just a fantastic program (a draft of which can be found here) but quite frankly one of the strongest ASA conference programs I’ve ever seen. The Panel Line-Up alone features a dizzing array of philosophical talent both from within Philosophical Aesthetics and from without. Check out the following examples of Panelized Philosophical Bad-Assery (**starting with the obvious show-stopper**): Panel: Editor Meet-Critics Session on Christy Mag Uidhir’s Art and Abstract Objects Gabriel Greenberg (UCLA)Troy Jollimore (Cal State University, Chico)Eric Winsberg (University of South Florida)Christy Mag Uidhir (University of Houston) Panel: Aesthetics and the Senses Mohan Matthen (University of Toronto)Diana Raffman (University of Toronto)Clare Batty (University of Kentucky)Jenny McMahon (University of Adelaide) Panel: Fact, Fiction or Fraud Stacie Friend (Heythrop College)Joshua Landy (Stanford University)Jonathan … Continue reading