Art: An Introductory Reader

Front Cover
Rudolf Steiner Press, 2003 - Art - 263 pages
0 Reviews
Rudolf Steiner's vision of art, as with all forms of human expression, is that it should reflect our human experience of the Divine. This was not intended to suggest vague, mystical fantasy. As one of the few true initiates of the twentieth century, he was able to experience the realms from which humanity and all nature descend into temporal and spatial existence. He was able to speak with confidence of the qualitative and dynamic worlds of soul and spirit, from which all the phenomena we experience spring, including our individual existence.

The means by which the living nature of these realms can be expressed is not through rationally expressed concepts--which point only to the material, quantitative perceptions from which they are derived--but through the various forms and languages of art. Through art, human beings express the qualitative experiences of life. But Steiner goes even further.

In the more recent history of art, especially that of the West, artistic expression has become less a product of spiritual inspiration and more the expression of personal experience, which is identified with materialistic existence. Naturalistic and realistic representations of the physical world are devoid of spiritual expression.

As humanity has descended into a materialized, spiritually void experience of life, art has followed that trend. Today, it is little more than expressions of subjective, sensory views of the world. Modern nonrepresentational art, on the other hand, is an instinctive backlash against that trend, but does not get beyond personal expression. Contemporary art remains sadly isolated from the source of its own being: the world of soul and spirit. Steiner, however, attempts to unite personal human experience with the spiritual source of art, so that artists are spiritually conscious of the realm from which inspired expression descends into human existence. Such artists are neither isolated from the spirit, nor do they act as automatic mediumistic channels, but as a conscious and cooperative instruments of spirit.

Human consciousness must come to truly sense some experience of spirit before real progress in art can occur, and this is what Steiner tries to help artists achieve in the lectures and writings collected in this volume. Some of the works in this collection have been unavailable in English for some time. Topics include the being of the arts; Goethe as the founder of a new science of aesthetics; technology and art; new millenniums; the purpose of modern art and architecture; living walls; glass windows; wall colors; moving the circle; the seven planetary symbols in the first Goetheanum; "The Group" statue; and color, faces, and physiognomy.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Introduction by Anne Stockton
1
The Being of the Arts
15
Goethe as the Founder of a New Science
36
Technology and Art
65
At the Turn of Each New Millennium
92
Colour on the Walls
118
The Seven Planetary Capitals of
135
Colour and Faces
148
The Arts and Their Mission 11
187
Transformation for Artistic Evolution
209
The Hierarchies and the Rainbow
222
Rainbow Meditation
243
The Being and the Countenance
245
Notes
251
Sources
259
Further Reading
262

Physiognomies
156
PART THREE
163
The Arts and Their Mission I
165
Note Regarding Rudolf Steiners Lectures
264
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2003)

Austrian-born Rudolf Steiner was a noted Goethe (see Vol. 2) scholar and private student of the occult who became involved with Theosophy in Germany in 1902, when he met Annie Besant (1847--1933), a devoted follower of Madame Helena P. Blavatsky (1831--1891). In 1912 he broke with the Theosophists because of what he regarded as their oriental bias and established a system of his own, which he called Anthroposophy (anthro meaning "man"; sophia sophia meaning "wisdom"), a "spiritual science" he hoped would restore humanism to a materialistic world. In 1923 he set up headquarters for the Society of Anthroposophy in New York City. Steiner believed that human beings had evolved to the point where material existence had obscured spiritual capacities and that Christ had come to reverse that trend and to inaugurate an age of spiritual reintegration. He advocated that education, art, agriculture, and science be based on spiritual principles and infused with the psychic powers he believed were latent in everyone. The world center of the Anhthroposophical Society today is in Dornach, Switzerland, in a building designed by Steiner. The nonproselytizing society is noted for its schools.

Anne Stockton has been painting professionally for most of her life. Resolving to become a painter at age thirteen, Stockton began her formal studies at the Art Student's League and Grand Central Art School, New York City, in her fifteenth year. She has taught for many years in the U.S. and England, at Tobias School of Art, which she founded in 1979 with her husband Kurt Falk. She lives and works in her studio in Sussex, England.

Bibliographic information