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Thinking About Space...2, Martin Heidegger : "Art and Space"

This entry was meant to be nothing more than my notes from Heidegger's "Art and Space". I have changed my feeling on this. I will include instead notes for the article as far as I have typed them (about half) and additionally include some links to the rare article discussing this topic.

The first such link is to a partial book on google books. I found it very insightful but also completely annoying that it is abridged by the google preview of the book. Starting at the bottom of page 146 and continuing to the end of the preview. The author here discusses "Art and Space" in terms of the revolution in Heidegger's thinking and in terms of the artist .Chillida (wiki). who the author sees as a representative of Heidegger's thoughts. The author also points out some important aspects of Heidegger's "Art and Space," for example, he points out that "dwelling" is defined as in opposition to domination and occupation.

Another abridged google book preview. The pages of this article that I read starting at 263 where a discussion of Heidegger's choice of language in discussing space. The author describes Heidegger's feeling that language is in "an essential and special relation to place and space...in at least two respects: first in the character of place and language as "gathering" and second in the character of language and space as both "differentiating" or "dif-fering" ---although as space and place themselves belong together, so too does such gathering and differing."

Below: my notes outlining Heidegger's "Art and Space". I have tried to do no more than simply understand what he is on about... For this purpose I have numbered all the paragraphs from 1-34. For each paragraph I have will write what I believe to be the major points.


Martin Heidegger "Art and Space" translated by Charles H. Seibert

1. Introduction:
a. Sculpted structures are bodies formed by demarcation.
b. Demarcation is inclosing and excluding.
c. Space is occupied by the sculpted structure.
d. What is the SPECIAL CHARACTER (truth) of SPACE?

2. What does is a sculpture?
a.The sculptured body embodies space.
b. " " " is a domination, and occupying of space.
c. " " " matches the technical scientific conquest of space.

3. What type of space are we talking about?
a. Sculpture deals with Artistic space.
b. Scientific and technological space also exists.
c. Do both ideas of space share anything in common?

4. What do these two ideas of space share in common if we know that scientific space is (below)
a. Space: is infinite, homogeneous expanse, not distinguished at any of its possible places, equivalent toward each direction.
b. Space is not sense perceptual.

5. What does artistic space have to do with the above understanding of space?
a. Space understood this way "challenges man increasingly and ever more obstinately to control it.
b. Artistic space also follow this challenge.
c. Does this shared idea of space limit artistic space to this understanding? (see paragraph 4).

6. Is this understanding of space complete or limited?
a. Are all other understandings of space "only subjectively conditioned prefigurations and modifications of one objective cosmic space?

7. How does this singular understanding of space work in terms of other historical understandings of space?

8. Historical understandings of space are not helpful...

9. What about understanding space as 'the sublime'.
a. Space as belonging to primal phenomena.
b. We know that there is nothing that can be shown to have existed before space.
c. Therefore, we know that the special character of space must be defined in light of this but is that even possible?

10. Defining space in this singular manner has led to an impasse.
a. We can not define artistic space this way

11. We CAN understand artistic space three ways
a. as an object present-at-hand.
b. the space, which encloses the volume of the figure
c. the space, which subsists as the emptiness between volumes.

12. A definition of art: "is the bringing-into-the-work of truth, and truth is unconcealment of Being.
a. it follows from this definition of art and truth that "genuine space (what uncovers its authentic character) begin to hold sway in the work of art".

13. BUT how do we find the special character of space?
a. Language!
b. Introduction of words used in relation to space: clearing-away.
c. Defines clearing-away as "to clear out, to free from wilderness, bring forth the free, the openness for dwelling."
d. Clearing-away brings forth locality.

14. Clearing-away is the release of PLACES.

15. What happens when the action of clearing-away occurs?
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