Paul Klee: the Visual Equilibrist Lecture Series Klee, a Maestro

Paul Klee: the Visual Equilibrist

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José Jiménez

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  1. José JiménezJosé Jiménez

    Nacido en Madrid en 1951, es catedrático de Estética y Teoría de las Artes en la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Ha sido también profesor visitante en diversas universidades extranjeras, y en 1993 se le concedió el título de doctor honoris causa por la Universidad de La Plata (Argentina). Promovió y dirigió en Madrid el Instituto de Estética y Teoría de las Artes (1988-1995) y fue director de la revista Creación (1990-1995). Ha colaborado, desde 1974, en distintos medios de prensa: Informaciones, Diario 16, El País, y a partir de 1995 de forma habitual en el diario El Mundo, y en el suplemento El Cultural, del mismo medio. Desde noviembre de 2008 hasta la actualidad, en el suplemento Cultural del diario ABC. Entre sus publicaciones destacan: El ángel caído. La imagen artística del ángel en el mundo contemporáneo (1982), La estética como utopía antropológica. Bloch y Marcuse (1983), Filosofía y emancipación (1984), Imágenes del hombre. Fundamentos de Estética (1986), La vida como azar. Complejidad de lo moderno (1989), Cuerpo y tiempo. La imagen de la metamorfosis (1993), Memoria (1996) y Teoría del arte (2002, distinguido por la Sociedad Italiana de Estética con el Premio Europeo de Estética).

"Art does not reproduce what is visible, but makes what is visible". The first sentence by Paul Klee in his "Creative confession", a text from 1920 during his period of full maturity, is a reflexion about the artistic process: about how the construction of work is projected, and a resounding declaration of intentions about the finality of art. Beyond any mimetic submission, Klee sets the objective of plastic arts not in the mere representation, but on the construction of what is visible. If that is the objective, the artist will have to travel through unknown, problematic territories, in the search of that material that has to be embodied like a vision horizon. In my conference PAUL KLEE: THE EQUILIBRIST OF THE VISIBLE, I reconstruct that tension of the uncertain search that has characterized the trajectory of Paul Klee, in both his creative side and his pedagogic activity, specially in the Bauhaus, and in his dense reflexions through writing.

Subject of the pressures of opposing forces, the artist: Klee, acts like an equilibrist balancing over a tight rope crossing emptiness, seeking an equilibrium always difficult to reach. Between the wished stability and the recognition of the petulance of attempting to go further than what the human fragility allows for, Paul Klee refers several times along his career to this figure: the equilibrist, as an expression of the search of those insecure results. Here we stand, in this random world, suspended over emptiness, trying to reach, even beyond our strengths, and with the occasional assistance of all kind of poles that we find along the way, attempting to go further. Trying to see, know, feel: attempting to give shape to the visible