Natura: Environmental Aesthetics After Landscape

Zurich: Diaphanes, 2018

NaturaThis book asks whether there can be an environmental aesthetics after the demise of the landscape-form. In this question, “environmental aesthetics” is but a placeholder term, a stand-in for the place left vacant by what, at least since Kant, has been known in Western aesthetics as the question of natural beauty and of its abyss and foundation: the sublime [It] seeks to contribute to  an exercise of the imagination, one that is both critical—a deconstruction of the landscapes of modernity­—and speculative—a conceptual wager on the afterlives of landscape and the emergence of new spatiotemporal constellations of the living. The strike-through of the term nature in the title of this book is, in this sense, not an obliteration but an exercise in negativity: a thinking against (but thus also with) the modernist archive as a way of finding within it new meanings illuminated by the lightning flash of that which threatens to obliterate it altogether. In thinking with, and through, the languages of the aesthetic, the book also places its faith in the latter as an epistemology for a time of “throwntogetherness,” as Doreen Massey terms it. Even as the autonomy of artwork faces the constant challenge of technology and its attendant forms of subjectivation, the indeterminacy that is particular to art nonetheless continues to hold an advantage over other forms of knowledge and experience, in the way it is able to ally itself to indigenous epistemologies and address the mesh of life that continues to throb after the end of the world. (From the Introduction)

With contributions from the editors, and from Emanuele Coccia, Maria Thereza Alves, Genaro Amaro Altamirano, Oliver Lubrich, Eduardo Jorge de Oliveira, Nuno Ramos, Álvaro Fernández Bravo, Javier Correa, Victoria Jolly, and Jill H. Casid.

For complete table of contents and to read the introduction, click here

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