SMArt Talks

From Global Art History to Global Aesthetics

Bence Nanay

23. 04. 2024
Hans Belting Library

Bence Nanay is Professor of Philosophy and BOF Research Professor at the University of Antwerp. He is the author of Between Perception and Action (Oxford University Press, 2013), Aesthetics as Philosophy of Perception (Oxford University Press, 2016), Aesthetics: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2019) and Global Aesthetics (Oxford University Press, under contract) as well as 6 other books published or forthcoming on aesthetics and the philosophy of mind.


Global art historians urge us to take non-European art more seriously. Art history has long been dominated by European, or more widely, Western art. Global art history aims to give equal (or almost equal) attention to Japanese art, Chinese art, Indian art, Korean art, Aboriginal art, and so on. Global art history is an important and timely project. But I will argue that it does not go far enough. If we want to stop privileging European art over any other kind of art, we need a much more radical shift. We need to examine what makes art history global and question the assumptions about the methodology of global art history. We need not only global art history, but also global aesthetics.

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