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Thread: What is art?

  1. #31
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    On the definition of Art:
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/art-definition/


    One thing is certain, Art is most definitely
    Rat spelled wrong.


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  3. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Bennett View Post
    TASmith! What! I'm gonna burn you at the stake for heresy!

    This is what's causing all the problem for hundreds of thousands of talented people out there. Our culture has been brainwashed by the mandarin high priests of the post modern dogma that the question of what is art, is relative. Which is the same as saying art is subjective. Which is the same as saying it has no consensus. Which is the same as saying it is impotent as a reliable communicator between individuals. Which is the same as saying it is meaningless.

    If this is what you believe then the question of what is art is not even worth asking.
    For you are playing a game of your own devising, by your own rules and it is one that no one but yourself will ever understand or care about.
    Or would a militant exclusive definition be better. Maybe the word and the discipline has become just such a game.

  4. #33
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    Art made art. B.t.w. Ever saw that elephant painting an elephant on canvas? Can this be concidered as art? They did not train him! he started scratching in the ground so they gave him a pencil (they claim). This question was triggered by reading the first bit of the link bill618 posted.
    I think capitalism ruined the question(what is art, not the elephant one).
    Chris Benneth: Who are those Mandarin high priests you are talking about? Do you think Darwin had influence on what people think art is today?
    Haha I know this post just screams ADD!

    Last edited by Gibier; June 14th, 2013 at 12:59 PM.

  5. #34
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    "Which is the same as saying it has no consensus. Which is the same as saying it is impotent as a reliable communicator between individuals."

    I think it's safe to say that there is no solid consensus for the definition of art. That's just reality. I don't see how that makes art impotent. Is art a reliable communicator? Well, what do you mean by reliable? to everyone? I'm not sure that's possible. For instance, take Waterhouse's Lady of Shallot, floating on her rowboat. It's a gorgeous work of art, moving to most people. But, to someone raised in a strict muslim faith, who believes all images are idolatry, it's not going to be so moving, is it? It doesn't have to be that extreme, there are plenty of kids in western culture who'd just shrug their shoulders and say it's boring. I've taught some of them. So, is it a reliable communicator? I'd say no, it's dependent on the receptivity of the beholder, but certainly very potent to some.

    Chris, I get the feeling I just don't understand at all what you meant.

  6. #35
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    [QUOTE=Gibi;3698419]Who are those Mandarin high priests you are talking about? Do you think Darwin had influence on what people think art is today?
    QUOTE]

    They are among the ranks of the public gallery directors and staff, the critics and the media cultural chiefs.
    In general, what people think art is today has very little to do with how it affects them and nearly everything to do with what they are told by the Mandarins of our culture. (be it through the lens of Darwinism, chaos theory, relativity or whatever is imported from elsewhere to give credence to their dogma)
    Last edited by Chris Bennett; June 15th, 2013 at 06:15 AM.
    From Gegarin's point of view
    http://www.chrisbennettartist.co.uk/

  7. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by TASmith View Post
    For instance, take Waterhouse's Lady of Shallot, floating on her rowboat. It's a gorgeous work of art, moving to most people. But, to someone raised in a strict muslim faith, who believes all images are idolatry, it's not going to be so moving, is it? It doesn't have to be that extreme, there are plenty of kids in western culture who'd just shrug their shoulders and say it's boring. I've taught some of them. So, is it a reliable communicator? I'd say no, it's dependent on the receptivity of the beholder, but certainly very potent to some.
    That's absolutely true, and your example corners the question perfectly.
    There are two things going on when witnessing a work of art. A direct, subconscious reaction to the physical, gestural elements of the work itself. And a conscious response that is context driven by our knowledge of its symbolic cultural associations.
    But these two things are quite distinct.
    The problem arises when they are confused with each other and seen to be part of the same thing.
    Most people tend to override their subconscious emotional appreciation of the gestural, physical elements of a work with the assumption that their reaction to its symbolic cultural associations is the measure and content of the meaning the work has for them.
    Last edited by Chris Bennett; June 15th, 2013 at 06:16 AM.
    From Gegarin's point of view
    http://www.chrisbennettartist.co.uk/

  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gibi View Post
    Ever saw that elephant painting an elephant on canvas? Can this be concidered as art? They did not train him! ]
    they did train him. sorry.

    "I think it's safe to say that there is no solid consensus for the definition of art. That's just reality."

    yep.
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  9. #38
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    Hmm very interesting. I'm really getting obsessed about this
    question. I didn't think before it would matter to me but it
    does.Made me drop the moral implications of Darwinism for a
    while to see what Schopenhauer had to say.

    Velocity Kendall: It was too good to be true. Poor elephant.

  10. #39
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    "Most people tend to override their subconscious emotional appreciation of the gestural, physical elements of a work with the assumption that their reaction to its symbolic cultural associations is the measure and content of the meaning the work has for them."

    So, what you're saying is people lie to themselves when they say they don't like Waterhouse, because... of it's cultural associations? I'm still confused.

  11. #40
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    Every school of thought has its mandarins.

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  13. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by TASmith View Post
    So, what you're saying is people lie to themselves when they say they don't like Waterhouse, because... of it's cultural associations? I'm still confused.
    They either do not have the sensibility to be emotionally reactive to what is physically there on the physical, graphic surface of the Waterhouse or they are announcing a political attitude in response to what its literary symbolism represents in terms of their perception of its cultural context within contemporary society. Or both.
    Last edited by Chris Bennett; June 15th, 2013 at 06:10 PM.
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  14. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    Every school of thought has its mandarins.
    here is a rare picture of them
    What is art?


    maybe is a bit like modern technology. to fully UNDERSTAND an iPhone you need to be expert in quantum physics, relativity, many fields of materials and manufacturing technology, international business, and thats just the device, before youve even considered the range of potetnial messages it can send...

    to use an iPhone, thats relatively easy, mostly.
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  15. #44
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    Interesting article and I'd only comment:

    You often hear it said that "museums of art are our new churches": in other words, in a secularising world, art has replaced religion as a touchstone of our reverence and devotion.
    Well, people always more believed in "art", than in church and that's why church was the prime art commissioner throughout the most of the history.
    The only thing that changed today is the "owner" of the art and therefore the object of worship.

    Also, Chris is right...people are told what to like, on the sociological level.
    What people like on anthropological level is something else and most are even unaware of that.
    Sometimes people say; -"this is what I want, but this (other thing) is what I need", where "want" refers to social and "need" refers to anthropological aspect.

  16. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Bennett View Post
    There are two things going on when witnessing a work of art. A direct, subconscious reaction to the physical, gestural elements of the work itself. And a conscious response that is context driven by our knowledge of its symbolic cultural associations.
    But these two things are quite distinct.
    The problem arises when they are confused with each other and seen to be part of the same thing.
    Most people tend to override their subconscious emotional appreciation of the gestural, physical elements of a work with the assumption that their reaction to its symbolic cultural associations is the measure and content of the meaning the work has for them.
    This is spot on.

    Edit: Actually, this is one of the most straightforward discussion of art I've read in a while. I'm not even kidding.
    Last edited by BichNguyen; June 15th, 2013 at 07:39 PM.
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