Upstairs Artspace to offer Philosophy of Art course Feb. 4-March 18

Published 6:02 pm Thursday, December 5, 2013

Upstairs Artspace is offering a Philosophy of Art course that will focus on the investigation of two central philosophical issues in the area of aesthetics and the philosophy of art. The six-session course will be held on Tuesdays from 6-7:30 p.m., Feb. 4-March 18.

One: Can art be defined and if so, how? This question has been, and continues to be of special interest every time a new art form or style emerges.

For example, the Tate Modern in 2012 had a retrospective exhibition of Damien Hirst’s work, which included his piece of a shark in formaldehyde. On what philosophical bases is this work considered art?

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Two: Is there such a thing as an aesthetic experience, different from all other experiences? For example, what occurs mentally when one sees Chartres cathedral as an art object?

The course will examine these two questions, and their connection to various specific works of art. This will show how different philosophical positions impact the viewing of art.

Dr. Fitzgerald will be leading the course. Fitzgerald has a Ph.D. in Philosophy and has taught at Rutgers University, Ohio State University, Furman University and Wofford College.

Fitzgerald excels at interpreting complex philosophical theories in a readily accessible, always insightful format tailored to the non-philosophers among us, often infusing her discussions with pop-culture references and humor.

To register, contact Dr. Fitzgerald at; or the Upstairs Artspace at 828-859-2828 or email front

– article submitted by 

Tom Madison