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ERIC Number: EJ790170
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2001
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0021-8510
African Aesthetics
Abiodun, Rowland
Journal of Aesthetic Education, v35 n4 p15-23 Win 2001
No single traditional discipline can adequately supply answers to the many unresolved questions in African art history. Because of the aesthetic, cultural, historical, and, not infrequently, political biases, already built into the conception and development of Western art history, the discipline of art history as defined and practiced in the West has continued to resist non-Western approaches to art. With the generally low esteem for and marginalization of African art within the broader field of art history, Africanist art historians have begun not only to reexamine their Western-derived methodologies but also to search for theoretical alternatives, lest they lose the "African" in African art. To make any substantial progress in dealing with the problems of cross-cultural translation as it pertains to the study and presentation of African art, however, one must consider both indigenous as well as Western aesthetic perspectives. In this article, the author examines the key aesthetic and art critical concepts and the important interdependence of the verbal and visual arts in Yoruba culture, which is well-known for its fine artistic achievements, primarily through the naturalistic life-size bronze and terra-cotta heads of Ife. Yoruba culture has produced a large number of the wood, ivory, bead, leather, textile, and other artifacts that are displayed in major collections and museums of African art all over the world. Yoruba art is among the earliest known by the West and consists of some of the best-studied African works in the field. With the progress made so far in Yoruba studies, and the thought-provoking research going on today, the time has now come to start asking questions about the nature and concept of art in Yoruba culture. Such questions are as important as those relating to art history, style, and iconography which are addressed in this essay. (Contains 3 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Africa