ABSTRACT

The subject of aesthetics is frequently misunderstood. It is oftentaken to refer to the sensory pleasure gained from contem-plating works of art in a detached or academic way. It has associations with an elite culture, accessible only to those who have learned to appreciate it. The aesthetics of landscape has often been linked with carefully designed pleasure grounds or artfully constructed vistas, where the scene recreates a landscape painting, thus relating the perceptual sensation once more to fine art. The beauty of nature is also part of the traditional realm of aesthetics; in recent times this has become associated with the myth of a pure world, untouched by human activity. Wilderness is its most extreme manifestation.