The art of Nietzsche

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Have I been understood? Nietzsche wrote this three times before sliding into permanent insanity. He knew he would be misunderstood 'by those not disposed and predestined' to grasp his ideas and foresaw their misuse. Indeed, an association with anti-Semitism and fascism has long clouded his work and despite general growing enthusiasm, many readers find his ideas difficult or obscure. In the arts, however, Nietzsche's ideas became almost immediately a rich source of inspiration. Artists understood him better than most philosophers. Perhaps this is hardly surprising, since Nietzsche himself was an artist - a poet, musician and visionary writer who wrapped his messages in paradoxes, and walked a tightrope between the rational and the intuitive. In 'The Art of Nietzsche' we explore Nietzsche's artistry, thereby getting an impression of the fascinating artist he truly was, while throwing new light on certain aspects of his philosophy. The accompanying music recordings contain rarely heard compositions by Nietzsche, for solo voices, violin, piano and ensembles, and some of his exquisite poems, set to music by Mahler, Delius, Orff, Webern, Rihm and Woodward. Over de auteurs: Anne Woodward, musician and philosopher, explores what it means to understand Nietzsche’s ideas from ‘the perspective of the artist’ and why Nietzsche has been such a source of inspiration for many composers and visual artists, past and present. Anne Borsboom, poet and writer, talks with five visual artists and a composer, all involved in creating visual works and music based on Nietzsche’s thoughts and poetry, about their experiences and the inspiration Nietzsche provided. She interweaves her own impressions and ponderings throughout these interviews. Piet Steenbakkers, lecturer in the history of modern philosophy at the University of Utrecht and holder of the Chair of Spinoza Studies at the Erasmus University, Rotterdam, argues that a chapter entitled, Why I write such good music, would not have been amiss in Nietzsche’s autobiography, Ecce homo. Piet discusses the merits of Nietzsche’s music and poetry in relation to Nietzsche’s philosophy.
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AuthorAnne Borsboom, Anne Woodward, Piet Steenbakkers
Binding MethodPaperback
Year of Publication2014
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