Modernity is based on secularization processes that ended up by proposing a conception of the sacred that became autonomous from traditional religious languages. In this sense, according to M. Eliade, the sacred is manifested nowadays in hidden forms, meanings and intentions that are apparently “profane”. There are many examples of abstract artists that consider their images as expressing some kind of sacredness. Most of these images are created through processes that involve disfiguration. These processes are considered by M. C. Taylor as the reappearance of the iconoclastic impulse that is in the core of the European reformist movements and of the negative theology. This serves us as a basis to hypothesize that arts and aesthetics are crucial to study the transformation of the sacred in secularized societies. Our objective in this paper is to study how the sacred is expressed in abstract art by focusing on the Spanish artist Jorge Oteiza (1908-2003). The analysis of his work and his theoretical proposal of “negative aesthetics”, based on his interpretation of the negative theology, help to develop a theoretical framework of a “new morphology of the sacred” in abstract art.
|Keywords:||Abstract-art, Sacred-profane, Jorge Oteiza, Negative-aesthetics, Negative-theology, Iconoclasm|
Postdoctoral Fellow, Fakultät GestaltungInstitut für Zeitbasierte Medien, University of the Basque Country (UPV- EHU), Berlin, Spain
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