Gadamer, Heidegger, play, art and the appropriation of tradition

  • Bert Olivier Philosophy, Centre for Advanced Studies University of Port Elizabeth PO Box 1600 Port Elizabeth 6000 South Africa.


The present paper is an investigation into the links between Gadamer\'s conception of the mode of being of art in terms of \'play\', and related models in the thought of some of his philosophical precursors, notably Kant and Heidegger. Due attention is given to the shift, in Gadamer\'s work, to a less subject-oriented approach to art, compared to those of Kant and Schiller, and the extent to which his own views were shaped by Heidegger\'s move away from subjectivism is emphasized. The place of the concept of \'tradition\' in Gadamer\'s work is also examined with a view to casting light on his own appropriation of the (art-)philosophical tradition. Lastly, an interpretation of a specific instance of innovative art practice (the multi- installation, Body II – Sublimation, which was exhibited at this year\'s KKNK at Oudtshoorn, South Africa) is attempted in light of what the investigation into \'art as play\' and the role of tradition has yielded. S. Afr. J. Philos. Vol.21(4) 2002: 242-257

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eISSN: 0258-0136