Come up and see my bower -- Only the most fascinating survive -- It could be anything : male and female animals in their artworlds -- Pollock In the forest ; abstraction as measure of the real -- Hiding ingenuity, or Think like a squid : camouflage between art and nature -- Creative experiments : when science learns from art -- The human, the elephant, and art out of relationship -- The brain In the cave : art at the edge of human certainty -- One culture of beauty, between art and science.
"Survival of the Beautiful is a revolutionary new examination of the role that art and culture play in nature and the evolutionary process. Taking his inspiration from Charles Darwin's observation that birds have a natural aesthetic sense, Rothenberg dives into the mysteries of why we create art, and why animals, humans included, have innate appreciation for beauty.Sexual selection may explain why animals desire, but it says very little about what is desired. The beauty of nature is not arbitrary, even if random mutation and whim have played a part in evolution. Where does the diverse beauty of bird plumage come from? Why do different species of butterflies have different-and beautiful-patterns on their wings? What can we learn from the amazing range of animal aesthetic behavior? And what about the role of art in human evolution? Art is a part of life that has been around for millions of years, yet we rarely ask or explore why and how.Now is the time to find out where beauty comes from. Beauty has come from millions of years of the magic of evolution, and now it is time to let it find us. The evolution of artistry in the animal world can once again help us understand how beauty matters in the human world too"--Provided by publisher.