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By David Davies

During this richly argued and provocative e-book, David Davies elaborates and defends a vast conceptual framework for considering the humanities that unearths vital continuities and discontinuities among conventional and glossy paintings, and among varied inventive disciplines.

* Elaborates and defends a huge conceptual framework for pondering the humanities.
* deals a provocative view concerning the different types of issues that works of art are and the way they're to be understood.
* unearths very important continuities and discontinuities among conventional and glossy paintings.
* Highlights middle subject matters in aesthetics and artwork thought, together with conventional theories in regards to the nature of paintings, aesthetic appreciation, inventive intentions, functionality, and inventive meaning.

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39) Indeed, Currie makes an even bolder claim, maintaining that all artistic judgments about works presuppose a knowledge of provenance of this sort: The [artistic] judgments we make are essentially bound up with presuppositions about what constitutes an accomplished performance by the artist. Not even the most innocent seeming aesthetic response (“this is a beautiful picture”) is purely aesthetic . . They are possible only against a background of assumptions (no doubt often vague and scarcely conscious) about what constitutes an achievement in the way of combining lines and colours.

And these assumptions depend in their turn upon complex assumptions about what is remarkable and what merely ordinary concerning skill and general artistic ability within a community. (40–1) 34 Aesthetic Empiricism and Philosophy of Art I have quoted Currie at length for a couple of reasons. First, the claim that all ascriptions of artistic properties to works rest upon assumptions concerning supra-categoreal features of provenance represents the most direct and radical challenge to any form of aesthetic empiricism.

If we allow this distinction to stand for the sake of argument, we cannot unproblematically appeal, as Currie does, to differences in artistic value in setting up a counterempiricist argument. Suppose, however, that Currie’s “Martian child” example can be redescribed so that the difference in ascribed value is a difference in artistic value, a difference pertaining to what all parties would acknowledge to be artistic properties of the two works. Even in this case, it doesn’t follow, from the fact that we and the Martians ascribe different artistic value to the two works, that attributions of specific artistic properties are “essentially” bound up with judgments about what the artist has achieved – the latter being what Currie has to show if he is to counter the moderate empiricist’s supervenience thesis and her attempt to drive a wedge between artistic and art-historical properties.

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