Thursday, January 04, 2018

Colors and Words

As Hegel pointed out, colors are truly remarkable phenomena. Like words, they are capable of being given an indefinite number of meanings and of arousing a variety of emotions. Like words, also, they can be used in order to produce a fresh meaning or a new emotional reaction. The gifted artist is as sensitive to colors as the gifted writer is sensitive to words. Similarly, both seek to use language or hues in such a way that an original idea, meaning, or insight is suddenly revealed. When the painter sees colors he does not simply see dabs of soft material that are to be placed on canvas. Just as a writer must master the meanings that phrases can have, so also the painter must master the meanings that colors can have.

Jack Kaminsky, Hegel on Art: An Interpretation of Hegel's Aesthetics, p. 114.

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