Subjects and Objects: Art, Essentialism, and Abstraction

The subject matter of Subjects and Objects is the limits of Abstraction in art. The notion of Abstraction, its development in art history, and the relation of art and philosophy regarding Abstraction are considered in addition to identifying and examining things that are essential to artworks. Any artwork has an identity, and comprehension of that identity depends on a perceptual object. A subject’s apprehension of such an object creates an “artistic complex” of which the object, the subject, and the apprehension are constituents. The essential elements of this kind of complex are the subject of the final part of the work. Its concluding section considers these elements as ‘material’ to be used to determine the limits of Abstraction.