Asked • 04/04/19

Does Art require an Audience?

Nietzsche consistently throughout his writings argues for a monological conception of art--art that does not seek "witnesses" or an audience. Not only did the episode with Wagner force Nietzsche to have "second thoughts" about art, but to "like anything at all after Wagner was a triumph." Cultural and social prejudices, phobias, and pressures pervert or stunt the aesthetic/creative processes according to Nietzsche--the genius should be *truly* for herself because the dominant authorities will sedate or even steal such energies, for their own purposes and, thereby, give a trifling notion of art's true value, which for Nietzsche lies in the very "transitions of life itself."Can art, especially today with the post-Hegelian "end of art" and Benjamin's "mechanical reproduction" theses, serve a thoroughly intimate function that leads a life of "courage without witnesses"? Can we say, for example, that rituals like fantasy-role playing or video games, which appear to be all about the artist as both creator and one's own work of art, are examples of what would qualify as monological art forms (and many other kinds), in Nietzsche's sense?

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