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Thread: From the first to the ninth art

  1. #1
    Satyavrata Maciamo's Avatar
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    Post From the first to the ninth art

    French speakers often use some paraphrases to call something by another name. It is common for English-speakers, for instance, to refer to 'New York' as the 'Big Apple' or to 'England/UK' as the 'nation of Shakespeare' (the French uses these too). French speakers often refer to 'cinema' as the 'seventh art' and 'comic strips' as the 'ninth art'. What I didn't know until today is what number was attributed to each art, probably in approximate chronological order. Here they are :

    - the first art : architecture
    - the second art : sculpture
    - the third art : painting
    - the fourth art : dance
    - the fifth art : music
    - the sixth art : poetry
    - the seventh art : cinema
    - the eighth art : television
    - the ninth art : comic strips

    Maybe the Internet will become the 'tenth art' (i.e. webdesign) ?
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  2. #2
    Horizon Rider Kinsao's Avatar
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    Now that is interesting!
    To see the order of the 'arts'!

    I am surprised not to see theatre on there somewhere. In some ways it can be seen as a kind of fusion/synthesis of sculpture (if you include the more 'recent' variation of installation art in the definition of sculpture ^^), dance, cinema/TV and music. That's just my take on it though! (I would have thought 'theatre' as a separate entity should be considered as 'an art' in itself; or maybe simply 'performance' as distinct from dance, TV and cinema... if considering a list such as that, although personally I don't find it so useful to 'classify' different types of 'arts'... not that there's any reason why not, just on a personal level it's not helpful to me, but that's another issue. :) )

    In some cases things blur together; for example architecture and sculpture both share concerns with mass and form in 3 dimensions... (and dance deals with the same issues, with the additional problem of 'duration', if one can think of time as being part of the medium...)

    I'll shut up now.

  3. #3
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    As far as I can see, the numbering of the arts originated in Hegel's lectures on Aesthetics. Recorded in 'Introductory Lectures on Aesthetics', chapter 5: 'Division of the Subject' (delivered from 1818 to around 1830).
    1 architecture, 2 sculpture, 3 painting, 4 music, 5 poetry - a kind of rationalization of idealist notions of the evolution of beingness, etc.
    The numbering was extended to include cinema initially as 6th, but later as 7th after Dance as 6th by Ricciotto Canudo, Italian/French intellectual
    There seems to be consensus on the ninth art being comics.
    The eighth I see claimed as Television, though that seems problematic, partly as it does not seem ontologically different enough from cinema to constitute a separate class from cinema, nor am I comfortable with calling most of what is on tv 'art', especially given the idealistic Hegelian origins of the sequence.

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