Aestheticisation of Moral Valuation

Exploring the notion of the artwork as a societal tool by analysing the work of Iza Pavlina and Jacques Ranciere. Setting ground for a critique of moralistic logic of sensation.

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Critical reflection of contemporary artworks can be often found in the company of moral judgments, whose main purpose is to form a personal canon, a set of positive or negative evaluated artworks, formed not so much in accordance with the Kantian judgment of taste (nor the value of beauty that it entails), but rather with the individual’s world view, understood as a set of personal stances and/or beliefs by which one economically solves everyday political or ethical issues (preserving the energy and time that would otherwise be spent on conscious or maybe even critical valuation).

The problem with this occurrence is not so much in the fact that the described moral apparatus is in close relation with the aesthetic judgment, but more so that it is covered with an apparent a-moral valuation, to which one usually prescribes the status of being progressive.


To figure out the precise workings of this ‘loaded’ valuation and the consequences that it holds for the evaluated artworks and their creators, the artists, a case study is in order. In this regard, I would like to start with an art project of a young Slovene artist Iza Pavlina that due to its specific structure offers itself almost as a paradigmatic example. Continue reading “Aestheticisation of Moral Valuation”