Human Drapery 3 by Jordan Wade *Read this series from the beginning.*  Language is a clear problem in articulating the concepts this essay addresses. We tend to apply only one adjective to a noun. So we may say Human Drapery 3 is a beautiful painting, an ugly painting, or a

Read More

*Read this series from the beginning.*  Kant’s distinctions about the sublime, and, in fact, the two forms of sublime Mathematical and Dynamical, are extremely nuanced and cannot be fully addressed here. But, there are some important points that help lead to the Axis Theory’s understanding of the sublime. Kant begins

Read More

*Read this series from the beginning.*  If ugly is the ontological opposite of pretty then disgust may be the ontological opposite of beauty. Kant closely ties the concepts of disgust and ugly. However, while Kant is ambiguous about ugly he clearly locates disgust within the imagination, as is beauty. He

Read More

Human Drapery 3 by Jordan Wade *Read this series from the beginning.*  Historically beauty and aesthetics go hand in hand. The question of beauty is the primary question of aesthetics. In the Thomist tradition, beauty is considered a transcendental with concepts such as the good and the true. If this

Read More

Leonardo da Vinci, Grotesque Head, c. 1480-1510 Red chalk on paper, 17.2 x 14.3 cm Windsor Castle, Royal Library *Read this series from the beginning.*  Ugly is the ontological opposite of pretty and fills the other side of the Sensual Axis. Where pretty causes sensual delight, the ugly causes sensual

Read More

Thomas Kinkade, The Cross, April 2010 *Read this series from the beginning.*  Kitsch Kitsch is often very clearly linked with the pretty. Certainly, that is the case with the work of Kinkade. Roger Scruton says, “The world of kitsch is a world of make-believe, of permanent childhood, in which every

Read More

*Read this series from the beginning.*  The Pretty Thomas Kinkade paints Cinderella It is often said that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” For Kant such an idea was absurd. “It would be…laughable if a man who imagined anything to his own taste, thought to justify himself by

Read More

A couple of years ago, a meme started to float around in what I think of as my Internet circles that wasn’t so much a joke as it was an expression of despair. It was simply a block of text – I think it was originally lifted from a headline

Read More

*Read this series from the beginning.*  Axis Theory The Axis Theory takes cues from historic conceptions of the sublime and the beautiful, especially Kant, and seeks to harmonize those terms with contemporary usage and my own intuition. As is demonstrated in the diagram, the Axis Theory envisions ugly, pretty, beauty,

Read More

*Read this series from the beginning.*  Continuum Theory Diagram of Axis Theory For most people today there is a continuum of aesthetic ranking. Thomas Leddy addresses this paradigm in his work on Everyday Aesthetics.[1] There are many terms that can fit along this continuum but my focus will remain on

Read More

I have enjoyed using this website as a place to think through aesthetic ideas. I am in the process of developing a systematic theory on philosophical aesthetics. I began talking about these ideas here with the posts On The Beautiful, The Sublime, The Pretty, and the Ugly & Distinguishing between the Pretty and

Read More

So why is it so hard to make a good Jesus movie? After all, the story of Jesus is the greatest story over told. Why is it so hard to make a good story out of the greatest story? The problem is artistic. The way one artistic medium works does

Read More

My childhood home.   Let’s face it, it is absolutely impossible for us to understand an eternal transcendent God and his domain. It is far beyond our comprehension. So, we often use metaphor to make the incomprehensible accessible to us. Jesus did this exact thing when in John 14:2 he

Read More