Australian Beauty

Beauty is problematic for contemporary art theory at least in part because it affords a pleasurable, life-affirming, yet ineffable experience. Yet Margot Osborne finds many examples to show that it has never really gone away. As Peter Schjeldahl observed in 1996: Beauty will be what it has always been and, despite everything, is now in furtive and inarticulate ways: an irrepressible, anarchic, healing human response without which life is a mistake.' Osborne writes: Embodiment, the synthesis of sensibility, skill and material form, is at the heart of beauty...The perception of beauty is an integrative sensual and cerebral experience, dissolving dualities of mind/body and repudiating outmoded art form hierarchies.

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