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Malcolm Andrew's analysis

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Jessica Montello ART 383 Landscape in China Dr. Rick Kent Summary of Malcolm Andrews' Landscape and Western Art: Land into Landscape What makes a landscape? Landscape according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary is defined as "a: a picture representing a view of natural inland scenery and b: 1the art of depicting such scenery."1 Malcolm Andrews' leads off the first chapter of Landscape and Western Art with the statement "A 'landscape', cultivated or wild, is already artifice before it has become the subject of a work of art. Even when we simply look we are already shaping and interpreting."2 Landscape is often viewed as the "raw material waiting to be processed by an artist."3 However, Andrews takes it one step further saying land is the raw form, so the process of creating a painting or photograph featuring a landscape involves the conversion of "land into landscape; landscape into art."4 Viewing land as landscape is a "process of discrimination"5 according to Andrews, this transformation of land into landscape; landscape into art is the "shaping and interpreting" addressed in the opening statement. One of the first steps in the process of defining what makes a specific tract landscape is to choose where the boundaries of our reference frame lies. ...read more.


A3 child when questioned about a landscape may talk about the colors, the different plants,4 5and hills or streams. The answer given by an adult may focus on the physical attributes of the landscape but may also delve into the emotions or philosophical questions that the landscape raises. Based on William Wordsworth's "Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey" Andrews formulated a "developmental model of the changing appreciation of natural scenery"9 that helps describe the changes in our perception of the natural landscape from a rough and unrefined liking to a more sophisticated, highly evolved appreciation. In art, landscape has evolved from being the parergon or "accessory element"10 to being the argument, the central theme. As the bulk of the population in Europe moved from rural areas to urban metropolises, the need for landscape in art, as well as the element of nature in the middle of the cities, grew. Small parks and artistic representations of good views allow people living in cities to enjoy the wide-open spaces of the countryside even though a concrete jungle surrounds them. Andrews says, "A single framed view of countryside offers the opportunity for an apparently totalizing view of wide space, an experience no longer possible ...read more.


As insiders aware of the interdependency we share with the natural world, landscape in art serves only as a reminder of the changes we have made in the move from living as one with nature to apart from nature and how those6 changes have led to the slow decline of nature and the scarcity of what once seemed to be endless supplies of natural resources. Perhaps the best way to sum up the chapter is with the trio of assertions made by WJT Mitchell, "Landscape is not a genre of art but a medium. Landscape is a medium of exchange between the human and the natural, the self and the other. As such, it is like money: good for nothing in itself, but expressive of a potentially limitless reserve of value. Landscape is a natural scene mediated by culture. It is both represented and presented space, both a signifier and a signified, both a frame and what a frame contains, both a real place and its simulacrum, both a package and the commodity inside the package."1515 1-5 Malcolm Andrews, Landscape and Western Art (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999) 1-23. 6-8 Ibid. 1-23 9-12 Ibid. 1-23 13-14 Ibid. 1-23 15 Ibid. 1-23 1 ...read more.

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