The Beauty of Distance in Kant’s aesthetics

I was lucky enough to have recently visited the 17th Biennale of Sydney with this year’s theme THE BEAUTY OF DISTANCE: Songs of Survival in a Precarious Age. One aspect of the theme is the intention to consider the distance between Australia and other major countries in a positive light by comparing it with the notion of distance that has been held central to the experience of beauty in traditional aesthetic theory. This is exemplified by the notion of disinterestedness in Kant’s theory of the beautiful described in The Critique of the Power of Judgment (1790).

Finnish film and photography artist Salla Tykkä explores the relationship between the colour white and beauty in two films presented at the biennale: Victoria which shows the life cycle of a giant water lily and Airs Above the Ground which records the training of magnificent Lipizzaner stallions. Her investigation is inspired by the aesthetic theory of Victorian artist John Ruskin. Continue reading “The Beauty of Distance in Kant’s aesthetics”