How does the philosophy of the Romantic Movement affect the thinking concerning art and artists?How does the philosophy of the Romantic Movement affect the thinking concerning art and artists?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that the Romantic movement did much to place the art and the artist in the forefront of creation.  Preceding the Romantic movement, the role of the artist was secondary, almost to the point where the artist was invisible.  This was not the case with the Romantics.  To a certain extent, it makes sense.  If one of the primary focal points of the movement was to praise the role of the subjective, then it stands to reason that the subjectivity of the artist should also receive much in way of praise.  Romantic artists believed that the traditional division between art, creation, and artist should be tossed out.  In its place would be a vision where all of these merge together.  The artist became as important as the art.  For example, Beethoven never really bought into the idea that the artist should be separate from their work and not acknowledged.  Byron's exploits made him almost more important than his work.  Wordsworth placed his own voice in his poems so that the reader can presume that he is the speaker in all of his poem.  Keats' desire to be amongst "the greatest" of all poems precedes his work.  In this light, the Romantic movement made the artist almost as important, if not more, than the art being created.

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