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The Pensive ImageArt as a Form of Thinking$
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Hanneke Grootenboer

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780226717951

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226718002.001.0001

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The Profundity of Still Life

The Profundity of Still Life

(p.110) Chapter Four The Profundity of Still Life
The Pensive Image

Hanneke Grootenboer

University of Chicago Press

“The Profundity of Still Life” argues that the still life is the most philosophical of genres. The chapter demonstrates how various modes of reflection in still life painting (in mirrors, dew drops or shiny surfaces) can be linked to philosophical reflection and (Cartesian) self-consciousness. The discussion includes perspective as a mode of thinking and examines visual concepts such as the finite and the infinite as worked out by Blaise Pascale and Hubert Damisch. A comparison of seventeenth-century still life painting to Paul Klee’s Equals Infinity will reinforce the claim made by Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari that art is a form of thought.

Keywords:   seventeenth-century Dutch still life painting, Adriaen Coorte, Jan van Huysum, Maria van Oosterwijck, Paul Klee, perspective in art, concept, infinity in painting, philosophical reflection, reflection in art

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