"Aestheticism" emerged in the late 19th century as a cultural and artistic movement that celebrates beauty and artistic expression for its own sake. It rejects the notion that art should serve moral, social, or practical purposes.
In music, aestheticism places a strong emphasis on the beauty of sound and musical expression. Composers within this movement create music primarily to evoke aesthetic pleasure, valuing the emotional and sensory experience it provides. These compositions prioritize elegance and refinement in their structure, melody, and harmony, resulting in music characterized by its sophistication.
Aestheticist music explores a wide range of emotions through melody, harmony, and rhythm, aiming to evoke emotional responses through the inherent beauty of the music. Composers are encouraged to express their individual artistic visions without being constrained by societal norms.
Some aestheticist composers seek to create synesthetic experiences by connecting music with visual or emotional sensations. Overall, aestheticism celebrates music as an art form capable of providing unique and profound aesthetic experiences, inviting listeners to immerse themselves in the sheer beauty of sound.