Inference Series: Intuitive deliberation in visual energy.

Inner-Circle Series: Transmutation of distinct gesture to replicable lexicon of sculptural forms.

Beta Series: Invented symbolic language, Cagian-beta; text art.

Saltz (senior art critic for New York magazine), too, like Hegel and Kuspit, is looking for the aesthetic in contemporary art. Ian M Cage, a contemporary Western North Carolina artist is one whom, I think, Saltz would see as making a bold, aesthetic statement.

We might argue that Cage’s paintings are a perfect embodiment of the idea that the aesthetic should be central to art, and so place him squarely in the Kuspit and Hegel camp. Cage, as does Hegel, sees art, through beauty, as connecting an individual to his or her most basic self, and both, for the artist and viewer, helping that person reach his or her greatest potential. Cage claims that art has the potential to affect the nature of both our internal processes and beliefs, and so to enhance our forms of living.

Again, Saltz, in another recent article (“Vulture,” 6/17/14), asks why so much new abstraction looks the same, and claims that it is mainly visual muzak done with smudges, and splotches in shades of pale, with little internal scale, and so is frictionless. Cage’s work could not be further from this description.

With echoes of Kandinsky, and Guston, Cage’s recent work is anything but pale.

This consists for Hegel in the aspiration of the art of transcendence, which embodies the true notion of beauty. And, so I believe for Cage, by combining the art of figuration, and the abstract, by seeking the “medial abstraction,” there is an attempt to reach Hegel’s ideal of art, as a vehicle for the inner life, and a vehicle for transcendence.

Cage’s art, as it was for Hegel, is a means by which humanity comes to know itself.

~Excerpts from “Ian M Cage -- A Contemporary Master of the Aesthetic or Not Visual Muzak” (July 2014) by Deborah Fitzgerald, PhD - Former acquaintance of Robert Rauschenberg and teacher at Rutgers, Ohio State, Furman and Wofford College.

Ian M Cage

The following are trademarks of Ian M Cage: Structural Abstraction™, Cagian-Beta™.