Adelheid Mers. "Transfer Diskurse – Einige relevante Künstlerpositionen. Kultur‑ und Kreativindustrie. Kreativität/Innovation. Ästhetik. Diagrammatik", in: Martin Tröndle, Julia Warmers, Eds."Artistic Research als ästhetische Wissenschaft. Zur transdisziplinären Hybridisierung von Wissenschaft und Kunst", transcript Verlag, Bielefeld, 2011

Excerpts from English draft:

According to Leonard Wessell, “Baumgarten was interested in knowledge about obscure and confused experience, i.e., sensations. Sensations in perceptual experience are not chaotically perceived. Rather they are ordered. There must be some form that determines this order of perceptual or sensate experience. It is this form that is the object of aesthetics. […] In the section of his Metaphysica entitled Psychologica empirica, Baumgarten defines aesthetics: "The science of sensitively knowing and proposing is aesthetics, the logic of the inferior faculty of knowing, the philosophy of the graces and the muses, the inferior knowledge, the art of thinking beautifully, the art of the analogy of reason" (§ 533). Baumgarten's revolutionary character can be seen in his claim that aesthetics is an ars analogi rationis.”(1)

In the Prolegomena to the Aesthetica (2), [Baumgarten] initially (§2) divides the ‘inferior faculty of knowing’ in natural ability and acquired expertise, the latter of which may give rise to scholarly aesthetics and to applied aesthetics (docentem et utentem).

In §3 and §4 of the Prolegomena, expert aesthetics may offer supporting material for the sciences (philological use), help mediate scientific knowledge (hermeneutic use), improve cognition beyond the limits of the clearly graspable (exegetic use), provide foundations for all contemplative mental tasks (rhetoric use), in general support the practice of daily life (homiletic use) and the fine arts (poetic use, usefulness for music, and others.)



1. Alexander Baumgarten's Contribution to the Development of Aesthetics. Leonard P. Wessell, Jr.,The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, Vol. 30, No. 3 (Spring, 1972), pp. 333-342 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of The American Society for Aesthetics, p.337

2. I am translating from a Latin/German edition, Alexander Gottlieb Baumgarten. Theoretische Aesthetik – Die grundlegenden Abschnitte aus der “Aesthetica” (1750/58). Übersetzt und herausgegeben von Hans Rudolf Schweizer. Felix Meiner Verlag Hamburg. Zweite, durchgesehene Auflage 1988.