塞尚與柏格森(國際英文版) Cezanne and Bergson: Bergsonism in Cezanne，s Late Works
- 作者：尤昭良 追蹤
- 出版社：漢世紀數位 出版社追蹤
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《塞尚與柏格森(國際英文版)》Cezanne and Bergson: Bergsonism in Cezanne，s Late Works
第四章將論證柏格森哲學與塞尚晚年藝術廣泛的類似性，並依其先後發展歷程推斷其相關性；最後一章歸結本研究的哲學意義並解答若干具有爭論性的問題，包含: 柏格森哲學的發展也持續影響到部份塞尚的後繼者，如野獸主義、立體主義與未來主義的重要成員， 於是，以二十世紀初歐洲繪畫為主體的現代繪畫的重要特質之一，可較完整地被詮釋為：以塞尚為先導、一個富有變化與創意的「柏格森風格」（Bergsonian style）之表現形式與創新發展。
The main crux of this book is to discuss the analogy between Paul Cezanne’s late works and Henri Bergson’s early philosophy, thereby providing those who are interested in or troubled by the artist’s motivation a Bergsonian interpretation.
The writer adopts the method of contrast in analyzing both their notions of “intuition and intelligence” epistemology-wise as well as “appearance and reality” metaphysics-wise. This book will also compare their respective use of abstract philosophical symbols and concrete artistic symbols.
Aside from arguing the intensive relatedness between the two in the form of book for the first time, the author also points out how Bergson’s philosophical development continued to have influence on some of Cezanne’s artistic successors, such as the main proponents of Fauvism, Cubism and Futurism.
Consequently, a principal characteristic of early 20th century French painting could be interpreted as the multiple formal expressions and innovative developments of Bergsonian style, or the crystallization of Bergsonism.
Fu-Jen Catholic University, Taiwan, B.A. (Philosophy), 1973-77
California State University, Dominquez Hills, CA. , USA
Humanities External Degree Program (Art), 1991-97
Taiwan Normal University, Taiwan, M.A. (Art), 1997-99
Chinese Cultural University, Taiwan, Ph.D. (Philosophy), 1999-2002
National Taipei University of Nursing and Health Sciences, Associate Professor, 2002-17
Theses: Cezanne and Bergson - Bergsonism in Cezanne's Late Works, Bergsonism in Modern Painting
Novel: The Code of Cezanne
Table of Contents
“Will I be like the great Hebrew leader or will I be able to enter?”
Modern Western painting has developed prosperously since the beginning of the 20th century. Every art movement vied for attention, with Fauvism in 1905, Cubism in 1907, and Futurism in 1909 as the most conspicuous developments. Many movements thereafter arose with wide varieties. Nonetheless, these dazzling schools have something in common: most major artists see Cézanne as their precursor. He is the undisputed father of modern art. For a century, various studies have been done on Cézanne. Many different theories have been made on his late works, but most differ in opinions. In 1996 Cézanne retrospective, the curator commented disappointedly that: “His work has been extensively analyzed, but in fundamental respects it remains incompletely understood.” Thus on the one hand, in the early 20th century, Cézanne is the acknowledged “father of modern art”, whereas, after a century, “in fundamental respects his works remain incompletely understood.”
Pondering over and over about this situation has led me to the conception of this study. That commentary that “Work has been extensively analyzed” means from late 19th century up to now, studies on Cézanne are accumulating; “fundamental aspects” mean the root of thoughts and the basic content of the works; “remains incompletely understood” means some parts have been understood, while others have not. After initial evaluation, I have discovered that a Bergsonian interpretation has rarely been used to discuss Cézanne, but Bergson’s philosophy is a significant cultural factor in the late 19th century stressed by most of historians.
In the early 20th century Bergson and Cézanne are in fact the giants of philosophy and art respectively, and the former’s international reputation is even greater than the latter. Even until today, independent studies in different fields on these two people are more avid than ever. But unfortunately, studies on their possible relatedness are still limited. Indeed, Professor Pete A. Y. Gunter’s Henri Bergson: A Bibliography, includes more than six thousand bibliographies, yet few are directly related to Cézanne. Likewise, discourses on Cézanne, such as authoritative works by respectable Professor John Rewald, and the pictorial guide of the 1996 retrospective: Cézanne, rarely mentioned Bergson. Professor Lionello Venturi, another important Cézanne scholar simply says, “But Cézanne did not read Bergson.” In 1956, Professor George Heard Hamilton discussed the relatedness of the two in an article, “Cézanne, Bergson and The Image of Time”, which could be treated as the pioneer of Bergsonian approach. However, detailed discussions in this area thereafter are still scant.
Nonetheless, noteworthily some cultural historians stress the importance of Bergson’s philosophy in understanding the significance of late 19th century French art. In Arts and Ideas, Professor William Fleming points out “scientific ideas” and “interpretations of experiences through time” as two critical concepts in understanding art of that time. As to the latter, he proposes Bergon’s philosophy and comments: “The application of Bergson’s theory of time to the arts of the late 19th century can be very illuminating.” Fleming uses the example of Cézanne’s thin coating and blanks, the “incompleteness” of Rodin’s works, and the relatedness of Débussy’s musical tones as support. Meanwhile, Professor Karsten Harries writes in The Meaning of Modern Art – A Philosophical Interpretation that “Yet Cézanne had in mind something more truly and more completely expressive of human capacities. Whether or not he knew it, his stance before life was characteristic of his time – and more of the attitude defined by Henri Bergson in a famous essay of 1889 on the nature of intuition: Les Données immédiates de la conscience.” Even German philosopher Jürgen Habermas observes in an article on modernity that: “Aesthetic modernity is characterized by attitudes which find a common focus in a changed consciousness of time. This time consciousness expresses itself through metaphors of the avant-grade. […] The new time consciousness, which enters philosophy in the writings of Bergson, does more than express the experience of mobility in society, of acceleration in history, of discontinuity in everyday life.”
Although the views of Fleming, Harries and Habermas do not focus exclusively on Cézanne or Bergson, and their views are not supported by specific evidence, combining their commentaries can bring out two major components of Bergsonian interpretation. One is in thoughts: Fleming’s “application of Bergson’s theory of time to the arts.” What Harries considers Cézanne’s “characteristic of his time” is similar to Bergson’s philosophy, and Habermas’ relatedness between consciousness of time and metaphors. The other is the epoch: in a broad sense, both Bergson and Cézanne were in France at the turn of the century, and Bergson’s philosophy was even an important factor to the aesthetic modernity at the time; in a narrower sense, the publication of Bergson’s writings and Cézanne’s late art might share a paralleling development.
From the discussion above, put aside the thoughts part, if we only get a view from the epoch, Bergson’s philosophy is a key to understand the cultural background of late 19th century France, and is an indispensable factor to Cézanne’s late period. While most interpretations of Cézanne scholars lack either one of the above two components, a Bergsonian interpretation is thus indeed necessary.
One might ask, why these Cézanne studies do not put stress on the Bergson factor? Although the answer cannot be given here, the difficulty can be seen from Hamilton’s early research and observations on general theories of cultural history. In the literature reviewed by authorative scholars such as Venturi and Rewald, none indicates that the artist mentioned Bergson; therefore, rarely do their works talk about him.
Then how can this book be written without related evidence? The doubt in this question obviously overlooks the transmission function of art itself, although it does bring out another aspect of this book’s topic: if Cézanne had really mentioned Bergson, the truth would have been revealed early in the last century; scholars need not do more research. On the contrary, since Cézanne “has not been fully understood”, how can one be sure that there are no other arguments that could support this book?
Actually, the hope that Cézanne would reveal the secrets of his artistic creations can be traced back as early as to Emile Bernard (1868-1941) and was common among people who interacted with him. Notwithstanding the fact that the sensitive Cézanne was in a highly competitive environment, he once suspected and blamed Claude Monet (1840-1926) for the relations between Monet’s daughter and his own son Paul Cézanne Junior. Cézanne also suspected Paul Gauguin (1848-1903) to have stolen his secret in creation in his dream. Moreover, he wrote in a letter, that older generation of artists all treat him as an enemy. Thus “revealing” his secret in reality is impossible. At the same time, this goes against Cézanne’s value on privacy; he wrote on April 30, 1896 that: “I thought that one could do good painting without attracting attention to one’s private life. To be sure an artist wishes to raise his standard intellectually as much as possible, but the man must remain in obscurity.” Because Cézanne intended to remain in obscurity, having him to reveal his secrets is unreasonable and impractical. Consequently, the motivation of this book must be stated. It is not trying to dig into Cézanne’s privacy but to follow widely-known letters as well as the self-revealing language in the works, and with sincerity, to travel w
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