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Panofsky’s Antinomies

Spaulding, Daniel (2021) Panofsky’s Antinomies. Journal of Art Historiography (25). ISSN 2042-4752

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URL of Published Version: https://arthistoriography.wordpress.com/25-dec21/

Identification Number/DOI: https://doi.org/10.48352/uobxjah.00003479


This article reconstructs the Neo-Kantian framework of Erwin Panofsky’s theoretical essays of the 1910s and 1920s, demonstrating that the schematic subject/object relation developed in these publications is also implicitly at work in Panofsky’s Perspective as Symbolic Form as well as early iconographic studies such as Hercules am Scheidewege. The article then draws on György Lukács and Gillian Rose to argue that there is a circularity in Panofsky’s method whereby the empirically given assumes the role of a ‘quasitranscendental’ a priori object, and furthermore that Ernst Cassirer’s philosophy of culture (with which Panofsky was in close dialog) shares this circularity. The aim of this article is not primarily to expose inconsistencies in Panofsky’s method, but rather to suggest that the impasses that art history encountered in its attempts to formalize itself as a discipline may serve as the point of departure for a future materialist art history.

Type of Work:Article
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
Department:Department of Art History, Curating and Visual Studies
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This article is archived in ePapers for preservation purposes

Date:December 2021
Keywords:Erwin Panofsky, Ernst Cassirer, György Lukács, Gillian Rose, iconography, Neo-Kantianism
Subjects:N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Copyright Status:Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors, with first publication rights granted to the journal. Authors may subsequently archive and publish the pdfs as produced by the journal. By virtue of their appearance in this open access journal, articles are free to use, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings. Copyright restrictions apply to the use of any images contained within the articles. This work is licensed under a CC BY-NC 4.0 International License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
ID Code:3479
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