||Derrick Cartwright presents a pair of lectures exploring a set of judgments about Beauty and Ugliness. Unlike assessments of Good and Bad, which have distinct instrumental associations, the beautiful and the ugly operate on a different level. Since antiquity these terms have been used to describe, and deride, various forms of artistic labor. But, what does it mean to identify a work of art as “beautiful” and, by contrast, how does conferring the label ugly on any object carry different meaning?
In the first lecture, on April 3, titled “Beautiful Things,” Cartwright reviews pertinent philosophical and historical arguments. He will also examine specific works of art that have been, by consensus or by individual decree, called beautiful.
In the second lecture, on April 10, “Just Ugly,” our somewhat eccentric survey continues, but with an emphasis on what is at stake when something is judged to be much-less-than-beautiful.