The Greek word aisthētḗs, which refers to the “Perception through the senses”, it came to French as be. The term came to our idiom What esthete.
An esthete is an individual for whom art is a primary value. In addition, an esthete is called the one who performs a cult of beauty or who has knowledge about esthetic.
For instance: “My grandfather is an esthete who has a house full of artistic works”, “A fashion photographer must be an esthete capable of recording the beauty in each shot”, “The Japanese filmmaker is often seen as an esthete who pays too much attention to visuals and does not focus on the content of his films”.
Also known as esthete follower of aestheticism: a doctrine that privileges beauty above any other feature of a work of art. As an artistic movement, aestheticism arose in Britain at the end of XIX century.
Another way of naming an artistic movement is through the concept of artistic style. In any case, it is a trend shared by many artists throughout a certain period of history, with a common philosophy.
According to the aesthetes, the art Its purpose is to exaltation of beauty. Social and moral issues, in this framework, remain in the background. That is why aestheticism is seen as the opposite of materialism and utilitarianism.
Oscar Wilde Y Joris-Karl Huysmans They are two authors considered aesthetes. These are writers who, through literatureThey bet on sensitivity and refinement.
It is important to note that often people outside poetry describe this art form as an exaltation of beauty above all things, and this could not be further from the truth if we take into account all the types of poetry that exist. nowadays. As well as in the cinema and in the narrative, among other areas, there are those who focus on the beautiful, even exaggerating or distorting the attributes of their characters and environments, but there are also authors who pursue crudeness or who they bet on the questions rather than the answers.
Putting beauty before social problems, moral issues or deep reflections on the various issues that matter most in society are not characteristics that are considered acceptable today, but rather the opposite. We must understand that the first aesthetes existed in another time and they needed to break down barriers that are now obsolete. The happiness It is a much more current objective than beauty, which is why contemporary art pursues the problems that hinder our fullness.
In France there were some trends similar to aestheticism, such as symbolism and decadence, so that some consider that aesthetes created their own version of these movements. The symbolism in literature it acquired considerable importance, to the point of being among the most relevant of the second half of the 19th century. In short, and based on the manifesto of the Greek poet Jean Moréas, was opposed to objectivity in description, false sensitivity, declamation and teaching.
With regard to decadentism, we can say that it encompassed both philosophy and literature and has two predominant features: themes in which skepticism reigns; an exaggerated refinement.
In the colloquial language, the person who knows how to recognize beauty and orients his life to the contemplation and appreciation of it. That admiration, on the other hand, generates pleasure.