Art as a Model of Revelation in Schelling: from Transcendental Idealism to the Personal Turn
Keywords:Revelation, Art, Person, Alterity, Freedom, Necessity, Character, Act, Christianity, Genius
In this article, I argue that the late Schelling did not simply abandon his early notion of art as revelation of the Absolute, but that even once he shifted from an absolute identity towards a personal God, his reflection on art was still helpful to think about revelation as a free personal act. In the System of Transcendental Idealism, art is the revelation of the absolute identity of conscious and unconscious activity. Schelling’s late notion of revelation shares common traits with this earlier notion of revelation in art. Furthermore, three main characteristics of the personal God who is capable of revelation (alterity, overcoming of necessity, action) can be traced back to Schelling’s reflections on drama in his early Philosophy of Art. Finally, in the late Philosophy of Revelation we find explicit analogies between the Christian God and the genius/artist that illuminate the way Schelling’s notion of art helped to shape his notion of personal Revelation.