The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
In this text on the 58º Salón Michelena (Valencia, state of Carabobo) written in the year 2000, art critic Juan Astorga discusses the relationship between art and technique to reflect on the definition and meaning of “art.” Astorga defines art history as a positivist science that groups together and catalogues different art objects according to technique and style. But, he argues that art history is also a science that addresses a phenomenon that responds to life’s enigmas. In his discussion of these questions, Astorga makes reference to the advent of artificial intelligence and its use in artistic representation. He also discusses how the works included in the 58º Salón Michelena were classified, mainly on the basis of materiality, technical congruence, theme, and vision of the world presented to the viewer.
This text by Venezuelan critic and curator Juan Astorga introduces and discusses some notions important to art theory. Astorga establishes relationships between positivist disciplines and the metaphysical. He deems “art” scientific insofar as it makes use of certain tools that enable classification on the basis of styles. In discussing that problem, Astorga invites the reader to reflect on questions that man has addressed with the help of other disciplines that are akin to science, disciplines like sociology, psychology, and semiotics. In examining these questions, Astorga provides tools useful to considering art today as a whole and contemporary art from Venezuela in particular.