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Conclusion

Experiencing Divine Music

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2024

Carolyn Laferrière
Affiliation:
Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey
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Summary

There is clearly a paradox at work here: how can sounds that are unheard, that are silent, be more pleasing to the ear than those that can be heard? In invoking this tension between the sounds of music and its corresponding visual representation, Keats points to the role of the imagination in the aesthetic experience of ancient Greek vase-painting. Images of musical performances are sweeter precisely because they cannot be heard. The audience must instead imagine the sounds, creating an infinite variety of melodic possibilities that emanate from the image. Permanently captured in a state of continued poetic performance, the pipes play on, repeatedly offering to the viewer the opportunity to imagine the acoustic sounds that fill the visual scene.

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Divine Music in Archaic and Classical Greek Art
Seeing the Songs of the Gods
, pp. 242 - 244
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2024

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  • Conclusion
  • Carolyn Laferrière, Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey
  • Book: Divine Music in Archaic and Classical Greek Art
  • Online publication: 01 February 2024
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009315906.007
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  • Conclusion
  • Carolyn Laferrière, Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey
  • Book: Divine Music in Archaic and Classical Greek Art
  • Online publication: 01 February 2024
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009315906.007
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Conclusion
  • Carolyn Laferrière, Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey
  • Book: Divine Music in Archaic and Classical Greek Art
  • Online publication: 01 February 2024
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009315906.007
Available formats
×