NotaBene .

Paradoxes of Realism in the Analytical Ontology of Art

Abstract: This article addresses some of the core problems related of realism about art objects. The discussion is limited to the two most general forms of fictional realism: the physical objects hypothesis, and the platonic abstractionism. I contend that while being objects (and not universals), artworks are neither just physical nor they are abstract. In the first part of the article, I outline the most prominent arguments against the physical objects hypothesis without ruling the hypothesis completely out. In the second part of the article, I discuss the two basic paradoxes related to abstractionism about art objects: the paradox of creation and the paradox of standards. The article aims at preparing the ground for a nominalist mixed theory of art objects with both physical and mental components in which the precise kind of ontological dependence of artworks upon concrete objects and events will have the final word.