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Dismantling the Frame: Site-Specific Art and Aesthetic Autonomy

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  • Design
  • Philosophy


This paper examines the assumptions underpinning one of the constitutive elements of the modern concept of art: the idea of aesthetic autonomy. I argue that the orientation of recent art practice towards what has come to be termed ‘site-specificity’ is best understood a progressive relinquishment of the principle of aesthetic autonomy. I develop this position through a close analysis of the work of Miwon Kwon. The paper is intended as a case-study that investigates the problematic relation between historical and philosophical enquiry.

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