Friday, May 14, 2010

Intersecting the Sublime in the images of Frederic Chaubin, Massimo Vitali, OMA and Elger Esser

In "Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and the Sublime" (1764), Immanuel Kant argues that the feelings of enjoyment are subjective. Kant's interest in the feelings of enjoyment is not focused on the crude, but rather on the finest feelings of intellectual curiosity, sensitivity, viscerality and virtue. The feelings of the beautiful and the sublime are his two categories. While the beautiful is a sensation of enjoyment caused by the feelings of pleasure, the sublime is a sensation of enjoyment cause by the feeling of horror. In the imagery produced by Frederic Chaubin of the Russian era monoliths, or Elger Esser's muted landscapes, Massiomo Vitali's post-communist Italy and Office for Metropolitan Architecture's most recent imagery of a resort complex in U.A.E., I encounter the feelings of the beautiful and the sublime. In fact Rem Koolhaas puts the objectives of his project as capturing the dramatic conditions of the natural landscape over domesticating it. -Ceren