loi de cristal

15:54 Jan 26, 2009
This question was closed without grading. Reason: Other

French to English translations [PRO]
Philosophy / Philosphy of art
French term or phrase: loi de cristal
Here's the context: "L’art du XXe siècle serait ainsi passé à la loi de cristal, et exprimerait, avec l’abstraction pure, le rapport de l’homme à l’Absolu." Please reply only if you actually know the answer. I can make vaguely educated guesses on my own. :) Thanks in advance.
Steven Capsuto
United States
Local time: 06:54


Summary of answers provided
4shattered crystal analogy
Ysabel812
4process/principle of crystallisation
Melissa McMahon
3the crystal image
B D Finch
3the law of the crystal / crystalline law
Helen Shiner
Summary of reference entries provided
Bruno Taut, Walter Gropius et al - crystalline architecture
Helen Shiner

Discussion entries: 5





  

Answers


18 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
shattered crystal analogy


Explanation:
Refers to Freud's analogy related to the fragmented personality:

'If we throw a crystal to the floor, ' Freud (1933) writes 'it breaks; but not into haphazard pieces. It comes apart along its lines of cleavage into ...

(hard to get the entire text online, but you see the picture)

Ysabel812
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
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22 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
the crystal image


Explanation:
This seems to be to do with the development by Deleuze of Reigl's ideas about ancient Egypt and the coexistence of past and present, origins and developments.

See:
http://books.google.fr/books?id=nBk6-MtJebgC&pg=PA409&lpg=PA...

"The crystal-image, which forms the cornerstone of Deleuze's time-image, is a shot that fuses the pastness of the recorded event with the presentness of its viewing. The crystal-image is the indivisible unity of the virtual image and the actual image. The virtual image is subjective, in the past, and recollected. The virtual image as "pure recollection" exists outside of consciousness, in time. It is always somewhere in the temporal past, but still alive and ready to be "recalled" by an actual image. The actual image is objective, in the present, and perceived. The crystal-image always lives at the limit of an indiscernible actual and virtual image."
http://www.horschamp.qc.ca/9903/offscreen_essays/deleuze2.ht...

The difficulty is that I cannot find an English reference to "crystal law/theory/hypothesis" or similar. However, they do seem to be about the same concept.


B D Finch
France
Local time: 12:54
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
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30 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
the law of the crystal / crystalline law


Explanation:
As I say, this is unlikely to be a stock phrase - but see my refs for Taut and Gropius and the crystalline

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Note added at 40 mins (2009-01-26 16:34:19 GMT)
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http://www.jstor.org/pss/989612

Helen Shiner
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:54
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
process/principle of crystallisation


Explanation:
Agree with BD that there's a Deleuzean 'vibe' here, though I don't think "crystal image" is right here - that's a specific application to cinema of a more general idea of crystallisation.

Deleuze's use - and maybe this is the reference here - goes back to Kant's discussion in his Critique of Judgement (§58) of how certain chemical processes produce "free formations" of geometrical beauty in nature, and he calls this process "crystallisation":

"The above expression, “free formations” of nature, is, however, here used to denote such as are originally set up in a fluid at rest where the volatilization or separation of some constituent (sometimes merely of caloric) leaves the residue on solidification to assume a definite shape or structure (figure or texture)... The formation, then, takes place by a concursion, i.e., by a sudden solidification—not by a gradual transition from the fluid to the solid state, but, as it were, by a leap. This transition is termed crystallization."

The context in Kant is speculation as to the objective bases of beauty in nature - "objective" meaning here "mechanical" rather than "organic". For Deleuze, the crystal is also a symbol of the non-organic and of a form that fuses different orders of being (past/present, liquid/solid etc.) in a sudden leap.

You can probably see from both contexts how this notion woud be used to describe the sudden transition in modern art from organic/representative forms to geometrical/abstract forms.

"L’art du XXe siècle serait ainsi passé à la loi de cristal, et exprimerait, avec l’abstraction pure, le rapport de l’homme à l’Absolu."

Melissa McMahon
Australia
Local time: 20:54
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 74

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  B D Finch: Interesting stuff on the science. I like the idea of principle for "loi", but less convinced by "crystallisation" as process, rather than "crystal" as state.
12 hrs
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Reference comments


28 mins
Reference: Bruno Taut, Walter Gropius et al - crystalline architecture

Reference information:
Maybe some of these links would assist

http://books.google.com/books?id=lXSg6NMDAN0C&pg=PA46&lpg=PA...


http://updateslive.blogspot.com/2007/09/wenzel-hablik-projec...

http://books.google.com/books?id=9iGYgtykzToC&pg=PA169&lpg=P...

Helen Shiner
United Kingdom
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8
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