International Studies in Philosophy Monograph Series


The World as Aesthetic Phenomenon

Stephen David Ross
Pages 107-142

World as Art

According to my entire understanding here, art is itself an emanation of the absolute. The history of art will show us most revealingly its immediate connections to the conditions of the universe and thereby to that absolute identity in which art is preordained. Only in the history of art does the essential and inner unity of all works of art reveal itself, a unity showing that all poetry is of the same spirit, a spirit that even in the antitheses of ancient and modern art is merely showing its two different faces. (Schelling, PA, 19) §14. The indifference of the ideal and the real as indifference manifests itself in the ideal world through art, for art is in itself neither mere activity nor mere knowledge, but is rather an activity completely permeated by knowledge, or in a reverse fashion knowledge that has completely become activity. That is, it is the indifference of both. (p. 28)