Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Naked Perfection

For Hegel, sculpture as an art form reached its apex in classical Greece. Greek sculptures represented an “ideal” beauty because they were the means by which the spiritual or an Idea found perfect sensuous expression in the human form. When I came across this website, I wondered how Hegel would handle its assertion. Basically, it claims that ancient Greek sculptors were so preoccupied with perfection that they manipulated certain features of the human body to such an extent that they became unrealistic. Or as the site puts it, “they are more human than human.” I’m not sure if Hegel would be concerned with the complete set of anatomical specificities, but I still think this hyperreality or authentic irreality (?) says something about the way in which Greek sculpture sought to capture beauty. It seems as if Hegel admired these works so much because they were models where genuine human forms and bodies free of defects became manifest through symbiosis. Some sculptures of impossible and unattainable human forms might potentially call this into question.

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