Bolzano on art

Paisley Nathan LIVINGSTON*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


In his little-known essay published posthumously in 1849, Über die Eintheilung der schönen Künste (On the Classification of the Beautiful Arts), Bernard Bolzano proposes an explication of the concept of beautiful art as well as a classification of these arts. Bolzano’s divisions allowed him not only to provide a principled and comprehensive classification of actual, well-established arts, but also to anticipate kinds of beautiful art that would not exist or be widely recognized until decades after his death, such as moving pictures, abstract paintings, and what he called ‘the arts of pure thought’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-345
Number of pages13
JournalBritish Journal of Aesthetics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016

Bibliographical note

A version of this paper, ‘Bolzano et l’esthétique’, was presented at the Musée Marc Chagall in Nice. I thank Carole Talon-Hugon and other members of the audience for helpful questions and comments. My work on this paper was supported by a grant from the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (Project No. LU13600115).


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