Abstract: To say that a work of fine art is beautiful because it has been produced by a genius introduces a determinate concept precluding a judgment of the work’s beauty by way of a pure judgment of taste. What Kant in fact proposes is that we judge a work to be the product of genius as a consequence of our judgment of its beauty. As Kant explains in KU §58, when we judge the beautiful in fine art it is the indeterminacy of the mode of mental activity in which aesthetic ideas arise which permits us to interpret idealistically the purposiveness in the work, on which account we regard it as the product of genius. This article examines in particular KU §50 concerning the combination of genius and taste, and the puzzling assertion in KU §51 that all beauty is the expression of aesthetic ideas.
© Walter de Gruyter 2012