What is art and do we even need it?

Overread

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So I got to thinking earlier - what the heck is art anyway.

If I think of art at school its sketching, drawing, painting, pottery, photography - its creativity. But its not boxes or tables; nor is it cards or bicycles because those things are Design and Technology - they are designs not artworks.

Some say that art isn't those things, but its a creative work that evokes emotion and an emotional response in the viewer. And if we take that line as a description of what art its the field suddenly explodes open; especially if we consider how much of a reaction and what nature of reaction counts as a "reaction". Now we can add drama and music; dance and poetry as artworks for they can most certainly evoke emotion in the viewer.

However with such open definitions we start to get confused. Is art linked to skill and technical achievement? Well ask anyone paying for it or anyone viewing anyone charging for it an they will likely argue tooth and nail that professional stuff must have quality and technical competence of "a certain level" to count.

And yet we have the Tate Modern, where dirty coffee mugs and empty rooms are prized forms of artwork. Items where the amount of creative input is what most would consider trivially childish and which often require a good essay or three to back up the "inner meanings".


So now wait an empty room is art?


To me art is, in today's world, a term which is almost worthless. I think once art was a thing, it had rules and a definition. It was something that as concrete and which had rules to follow for what did and didn't count. Certain things were in and others were out; and whilst those rule and boundaries did change over time, they didn't go away until relatively recently.
So now we live in an age where almost anything can be an art; where its combined with so many things and spread over so many mediums that we can't pin it down. We even understand how art is derived from the natural world around us; how many of the core compositional theories are based upon patterns viewed in the natural world.




So to me art is meaningless. It means nothing save an aspiration to a title of yester-year. A sketchy hazy link toward the great art masters of the past. In todays world art means nothing; but it means something to be a photographer. It means something to be a painter, a carpenter, a designer; a musician. These are things where we can have measure; where we can think within boxes just a little to have a title of worth; to have skill and talent.


So art - its very definition today is meaningless - and even if you don't agree with that I can bet that your understanding of art will differ to thsoe next to you. That its defining features will change from person to person - a word that has such varied meaning as to be near to impossible to bring it all together.
 

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So I got to thinking earlier - what the heck is art anyway.

If I think of art at school its sketching, drawing, painting, pottery, photography - its creativity. But its not boxes or tables; nor is it cards or bicycles because those things are Design and Technology - they are designs not artworks.

Some say that art isn't those things, but its a creative work that evokes emotion and an emotional response in the viewer. And if we take that line as a description of what art its the field suddenly explodes open; especially if we consider how much of a reaction and what nature of reaction counts as a "reaction". Now we can add drama and music; dance and poetry as artworks for they can most certainly evoke emotion in the viewer.

However with such open definitions we start to get confused. Is art linked to skill and technical achievement? Well ask anyone paying for it or anyone viewing anyone charging for it an they will likely argue tooth and nail that professional stuff must have quality and technical competence of "a certain level" to count.

And yet we have the Tate Modern, where dirty coffee mugs and empty rooms are prized forms of artwork. Items where the amount of creative input is what most would consider trivially childish and which often require a good essay or three to back up the "inner meanings".


So now wait an empty room is art?


To me art is, in today's world, a term which is almost worthless. I think once art was a thing, it had rules and a definition. It was something that as concrete and which had rules to follow for what did and didn't count. Certain things were in and others were out; and whilst those rule and boundaries did change over time, they didn't go away until relatively recently.
So now we live in an age where almost anything can be an art; where its combined with so many things and spread over so many mediums that we can't pin it down. We even understand how art is derived from the natural world around us; how many of the core compositional theories are based upon patterns viewed in the natural world.




So to me art is meaningless. It means nothing save an aspiration to a title of yester-year. A sketchy hazy link toward the great art masters of the past. In todays world art means nothing; but it means something to be a photographer. It means something to be a painter, a carpenter, a designer; a musician. These are things where we can have measure; where we can think within boxes just a little to have a title of worth; to have skill and talent.


So art - its very definition today is meaningless - and even if you don't agree with that I can bet that your understanding of art will differ to thsoe next to you. That its defining features will change from person to person - a word that has such varied meaning as to be near to impossible to bring it all together.

So your pictures are meaningless? Photography is art.

Why all the going on about it, or what is it or what it is not?

Art is many things you have missed in your rant. Art is human expression, applied skill, imagination, and many, many, many, other things. It is at this core that makes us humans and separates us from other mammals. Art is everywhere and in virtually everything. Your computer, your cell phone, the cloths you wear, the car you drive, etc.

Art is more than an opinion.
 

table1349

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Art is the guy at the butcher shop that I get all my meat from. He's a really nice guy and quite an artist when it comes to butchering up an animal or getting me the exact high quality cuts I want.
 

Designer

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We need art.

Good art, though, not pretentious BS "art" that is hollow and meaningless, but meaningful art.

We need art to nourish the soul, and we don't need charlatans playing us for suckers.

When you see BS, call it out. Loudly.
 

table1349

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We need art.

Good art, though, not pretentious BS "art" that is hollow and meaningless, but meaningful art.

We need art to nourish the soul, and we don't need charlatans playing us for suckers.

When you see BS, call it out. Loudly.
Oh next lets discuss religion and the new president.
 

snowbear

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Design, in many cases, is art: tables, bowls, even some fountain are a form of sculpture. Playing cards: the backs, and even the pips can easily be art, such as these.
 

Ysarex

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And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his (Adam) mighty heart. Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, "It's pretty, but is it art?"
--Rudyard Kipling

There are moments when art atains almost to the dignity of manual labor.
--Oscar Wilde

I feel such love and reverence for Art that it saddens me to see it prostituted by persons who have neither the power to make others feel as they feel, nor the ability to make others think as they think; they hide their impotency under the cloak of "Art for Art's sake."
--Ricardo Flores Magon

Without music life would be a mistake.
--Friedrich Nietzsche

Art, like morality, consists in drawing the line somewhere.
--G. K. Chesterton

If it were not for the intellectual snobs who pay, the arts would perish with their starving practitioners -- let us thank heaven for hypocrisy.
--Aldous Huxley

It does not matter how badly you paint, as long as you don't paint badly like other people.
--George Moore

All the arts in America are a gigantic racket run by unscrupulous men for unhealthy women.
--Sir Thomas Beecham

I believe in Michelangelo, Velasquez, and Rembrandt; in the might of design, the mystery of colour, the redemption of all things by Beauty everlasting; and the message of Art that has made these hands blessed. Amen. Amen.
--George Bernard Shaw

Joe
 

table1349

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Well until there is a universally accepted definition of "art" then any following discussions are pretty much the photographers "coffee klatch."

In the modern lexicon, any definition of "Art" is nothing more than "alternative facts."
 

Designer

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Well until there is a universally accepted definition of "art" then any following discussions are pretty much the photographers "coffee klatch."

In the modern lexicon, any definition of "Art" is nothing more than "alternative facts."
People should become better educated. Then, when they see pretentious BS, they should call it out, thus helping to educate others.

I blame uneducated art committees for the current flood of crap being bought, often using public funds.
 

table1349

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Well until there is a universally accepted definition of "art" then any following discussions are pretty much the photographers "coffee klatch."

In the modern lexicon, any definition of "Art" is nothing more than "alternative facts."
People should become better educated. Then, when they see pretentious BS, they should call it out, thus helping to educate others.

I blame uneducated art committees for the current flood of crap being bought, often using public funds.
Okay, calling you out on your BS then. EVERY BIT of this is pure unmitigated OPINION based on education of other varied opinions that are all pretentious BS. The concept that any one person or a committee of people knows what Art is or is not is pure pseudo educated pretentious BS.

You can like something or not but to definitively call something Art or claim that it is not, or even judge that is either good or bad is the height of pretension while wallowing in the depths of ignorance.

Me, I am quite happy with the public funded macaroni picture my 5 year old granddaughter brought me from Kindergarten. If I had a cubist Picasso hanging on my walls I would gladly take it down hang my granddaughter pasta.

As Pablo said it himself: "Art is a lie that makes us realize truth."
 

robbins.photo

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Art is the pudding of the soul, and not everybody likes tapioca.

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go polish my bongos. Peace out...
 

table1349

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"My favorite pudding is good old English apple pie."
Jeremy Bulloch
 

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