Horror, Awe and Culture

‘Horror’ stems from Gothic literature. What’s beautiful is its portrayal of vastness, isolation, solitude, its use of monotone colours, its quiet reservedness and calm tranquility. The aesthetics heavily incorporate natural objects such as stones, fogs, clouds, trees, forests and vast green land.

Sublime aspects of nature are usually fitted in, these possess a peculiar trait that lulls us back to times more charming, beautiful and in harmony with our natural world, where we could contemplate and engage meaningfully with it. The ‘awe’ in which the (gothic) horror genre produces satiates our inherent pursuit to be amazed, transfixed or astonished by the wonders of man, his thoughts and his world. This explains its appeal towards dreamers, thinkers and imaginists – the crooked trees and such twisted figments, the chiseled stones, haunting figures, moving statues and cursed cathedrals are imaginative beauties to behold.

The urban world has lost this awe and no longer cares for the fantasies of yesteryear or the splendors depicted today. The mesmeric architects once finely in-tune with sacred geometry, providing highly-elaborate works, have been replaced with modernistic thinkers, fixated on large chunks of glass, which today, plague a number of cities. Beauty has been replaced with sheer size as ‘quantity’, in our time, has shackled ‘quality’. These prison-esque boxes pervade the cultural aesthetes and have a bitter effect on the people who view it; losing wonder wondering round town. Such is the cyclical sanction of our lost awe today.