The Genius Decision: The Extraordinary and the Postmodern Condition

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9780882145754: The Genius Decision: The Extraordinary and the Postmodern Condition
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The author of numerous books and essays on art ranging from Michelangelo to Mark Rothko and Wolfgang Laib presents a postmodern reevaluation of genius. OTTMANN's thoughts in this study should be considered as fragments that form a horizon of conceptual events across the aesthetical and ethical discourses of five of Western philosophy's most influential thinkers: Spinoza, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, and Heidegger. The book suggests that while there is no essentialist quality of genius, the postmodern artist can reach the extraordinary by way of an active-passive "Genius Decision," which is engaged in an activity of failure in its desire to represent the nonrepresentable.

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About the Author:

KLAUS OTTMANN is a writer and independent curator based in New York. He is presently Chairperson of the Department of Cultural Studies and Søren Kierkegaard Professor at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. He has written numerous essays on art, design, and philosophy, and is the author of THE ESSENTIAL MICHELANGELO; THE ESSENTIAL MARK ROTHKO; WOLFGANG LAIB: A RETROSPECTIVE; and JAMES LEE BYARS: LIFE, LOVE, AND DEATH. His most recent curatorial project has been STILL POINTS OF THE TURNING WORLD: SITE SANTA FE'S SIXTH INTERNATIONAL BIENNIAL.

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"Ottmann convincingly argues, genius is simply not an innate essential quality. It involves action, risk and failure." --LINCOLN JOURNAL STAR (Jan. 23, 2005)

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