more from Oscar Wilde

Single Idea 7276

[catalogued under 21. Aesthetics / C. Artistic Issues / 6. Value of Art]

Full Idea

All art is quite useless.

Gist of Idea

All art is quite useless


Oscar Wilde (Preface to 'Dorian Gray' [1891])

Book Reference

Wilde,Oscar: 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' [Penguin 1949], p.6

A Reaction

Echoes Kant's thought that art is 'purposive without purpose'. Although I find Wilde's claims that morality has nothing to do with art to be na´ve, I find this remark sympathetic. Art may play with moral feelings, but is unlikely to affect actions.