What s Art? 3.0

Use this forum to have philosophical discussions about aesthetics and art. What is art? What is beauty? What makes art good? You can also use this forum to discuss philosophy in the arts, namely to discuss the philosophical points in any particular movie, TV show, book or story.
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Pattern-chaser
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Pattern-chaser »

gad-fly wrote: May 16th, 2022, 12:59 pm Carry my due respect for you as a person, even with no tase, and even if you are not moved by art, spiritually.
Your assumption that I am lacking in taste, and not spiritually moved by art, is just that: an assumption. It is not based on anything I have written here, so I wonder why you have seen fit to insult me? Is there a reason for this, or do you just enjoy demeaning others?
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by gad-fly »

Pattern-chaser wrote: May 17th, 2022, 5:11 am
gad-fly wrote: May 16th, 2022, 12:59 pm Carry my due respect for you as a person, even with no tase, and even if you are not moved by art, spiritually.
Your assumption that I am lacking in taste, and not spiritually moved by art, is just that: an assumption. It is not based on anything I have written here, so I wonder why you have seen fit to insult me? Is there a reason for this, or do you just enjoy demeaning others?
I have never said you have no taste. How could I? I would respect you as a person, even if whatever. Regretted that you have mistake my statement as insult. i believe and I take what you have said about yourself. Now that things are clear, let us back to the subject matter which is not personal.
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Thomyum2
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Thomyum2 »

gad-fly wrote: May 16th, 2022, 11:16 am What is wrong implying some has inferior or no taste? Risk closing our mind to his potential? It would be nice to respond every time with: Great, Wonderful, Fantastic, and so on. Saying Hmm . . . may invite disappointment. Saying No will provoke. Better to flatter than to annoy. We all know that. But let us go back to the subject matter. Art is one of the few things you enjoy in life. Some may even say it is what makes life worth living for, but not how to make friends and influence people. I would say art is one of the rare place where you can be true to yourself, not minding how others do. If you are serious about art, you should be be bold enough to say: this elevates me; this is rubbish.
I see nothing wrong with respectfully offering one's honest opinion or providing constructive feedback, when they're asked for. Our reactions and insights can be helpful to a growing artist when we can point out what they've done that works well for us and what they might have done differently to have made their work better. But to just tell someone 'this is rubbish' or 'you have no taste' accomplishes very little that I can see.
gad-fly wrote: May 16th, 2022, 11:34 am The best way to art is: Hate what you hate, like what you like, and enjoy it most. Don't spoil it with diplomacy, politics, social activity, definition, knowledge, and materialism.
I guess by now it should be apparent that I don't agree with this. Enjoyment is an important element, sure. The experience of beauty and the enjoyment we get from that experience underlies much of artistic expression. But it seems to me that if personal enjoyment is ALL that matters about art, then it just becomes another consumer commodity - something to be used when it gives us pleasure and discarded when it no longer does. I think there is so much more to art than this.

In my own experience, art sometimes requires - and deserves - some effort on our part and there are times when, in order to grow, we need to set aside our desire to enjoy. Art is an amazing doorway into experiencing and understanding other people, other cultures, and other eras and it's an essential component of all our shared human history. Much about art - especially when it's from an unfamiliar culture or coming out of a time or place when artists were experiencing considerable suffering - requires time and reflection and repeated exposure, and often even study, before it begins to make sense. That doesn't 'spoil' it - in fact it helps to open those doors. What we find enjoyable - what appeals to our tastes - can be a useful guide that takes us in a direction where we can expand our interests, and gives us a motivation to continue exploring. But if we are really serious about wanting to know understand art, it's necessary at times to suspend judgment when we encounter something that we don't enjoy right away and make the effort to break through that barrier into learning to see or hear something in a new way. But if we simply dismiss something as unworthy or beneath us because it doesn't give us immediate pleasure, we risk missing out on a lot.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by gad-fly »

Thomyum2 wrote: May 17th, 2022, 12:00 pm
I see nothing wrong with respectfully offering one's honest opinion or providing constructive feedback, when they're asked for. But to just tell someone 'this is rubbish' or 'you have no taste' accomplishes very little that I can see.

The experience of beauty and the enjoyment we get from that experience underlies much of artistic expression. I think there is so much more to art than this.

In my own experience, art sometimes requires - and deserves - some effort on our part and there are times when, in order to grow, we need to set aside our desire to enjoy. Much about art . . . requires time and reflection and repeated exposure, and often even study, before it begins to make sense. What we find enjoyable can be a useful guide that takes us in a direction where we can expand our interests, and gives us a motivation to continue exploring. But if we are really serious about wanting to know understand art, it's necessary at times to suspend judgment when we encounter something that we don't enjoy right away and make the effort to break through that barrier into learning to see or hear something in a new way. But if we simply dismiss something as unworthy or beneath us because it doesn't give us immediate pleasure, we risk missing out on a lot.
Nothing wrong with offering honest opinion. Honest, as you say, not necessarily constructive feedback. You only offer when asked? When I visit art gallery, I would do more than that. It is nice to be nice, to be polite, to please, and even to be diplomatic, but art is too valuable than that. Art demands honesty. If I cannot be true to myself, let alone be true to others about how I feel, when say I am kissed or slapped in the face, so to speak, by art, what am I doing here?

Art demands you to be bold, to disregard consequence. Art demands you to remove the fig leaf on private parts. Offend, provoke, with one condition: Be Honest. Same for your reaction to the impact of art. Forget about the artist. Forget how he suffers. Forget how he can be supported. Forget everything for the moment, except what you are confronted with. Art it is.
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Thomyum2
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Thomyum2 »

gad-fly wrote: May 17th, 2022, 7:02 pm Nothing wrong with offering honest opinion. Honest, as you say, not necessarily constructive feedback. You only offer when asked? When I visit art gallery, I would do more than that. It is nice to be nice, to be polite, to please, and even to be diplomatic, but art is too valuable than that. Art demands honesty. If I cannot be true to myself, let alone be true to others about how I feel, when say I am kissed or slapped in the face, so to speak, by art, what am I doing here?

Art demands you to be bold, to disregard consequence. Art demands you to remove the fig leaf on private parts. Offend, provoke, with one condition: Be Honest. Same for your reaction to the impact of art. Forget about the artist. Forget how he suffers. Forget how he can be supported. Forget everything for the moment, except what you are confronted with. Art it is.
Well to each his own. Art has been a big part of my life for more than 50 years, and has never yet demanded of me that I offend anyone or disregard consequence. And I've never felt the need to offend in order to stay honest or true to myself.

Not sure what this has to do with the question of what is art.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by gad-fly »

Thomyum2 wrote: May 18th, 2022, 12:58 pm
Well to each his own. Art has been a big part of my life for more than 50 years, and has never yet demanded of me that I offend anyone or disregard consequence. And I've never felt the need to offend in order to stay honest or true to myself.

Not sure what this has to do with the question of what is art.
Unlike you, art has never been a big part of my life. In this respect, you must be more qualified than me on this topic.

Put it this way. If you feel strongly about art, you may risk offending someone, right? Not that you intend to offend. It may be a big risk, and the feeling may be very strong. If you want to play Mr. Nice Guy, fine. Hide your strong feeling. But be true to yourself, though. This is important. May I suggest that this should be your baseline. No? I rest my case, unless your feeing has never been strong enough.
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Pattern-chaser
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Pattern-chaser »

gad-fly wrote: May 17th, 2022, 7:02 pm Nothing wrong with offering honest opinion. Honest, as you say, not necessarily constructive feedback. You only offer when asked? When I visit art gallery, I would do more than that. It is nice to be nice, to be polite, to please, and even to be diplomatic, but art is too valuable than that. Art demands honesty. If I cannot be true to myself, let alone be true to others about how I feel, when say I am kissed or slapped in the face, so to speak, by art, what am I doing here?

Art demands you to be bold, to disregard consequence. Art demands you to remove the fig leaf on private parts. Offend, provoke, with one condition: Be Honest. Same for your reaction to the impact of art. Forget about the artist. Forget how he suffers. Forget how he can be supported. Forget everything for the moment, except what you are confronted with. Art it is.
I respect your opinion, and I think I understand it. But do you see that I, and others, see and experience art differently, and that our ways of experiencing it are not wrong because they are not the same as yours? There is no 'better' or 'worse' here, just experience and appreciation. Your view seems to be that everyone must experience the intensity of feeling that art awakens in you; the same intense feeling as you.

I do not decry or demean your own appreciation of art; I respect it. But I can't see that it does, should or could apply to all. Some experience only lightweight pleasure from art, and that isn't wrong. Some like pop-music art: here today and gone tomorrow. It's ephemerality is not a failing, it's part of its beauty, its art. Others still, find different pleasures in art. This is as it should be.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Gertie »

Pattern-chaser wrote: May 19th, 2022, 10:53 am
gad-fly wrote: May 17th, 2022, 7:02 pm Nothing wrong with offering honest opinion. Honest, as you say, not necessarily constructive feedback. You only offer when asked? When I visit art gallery, I would do more than that. It is nice to be nice, to be polite, to please, and even to be diplomatic, but art is too valuable than that. Art demands honesty. If I cannot be true to myself, let alone be true to others about how I feel, when say I am kissed or slapped in the face, so to speak, by art, what am I doing here?

Art demands you to be bold, to disregard consequence. Art demands you to remove the fig leaf on private parts. Offend, provoke, with one condition: Be Honest. Same for your reaction to the impact of art. Forget about the artist. Forget how he suffers. Forget how he can be supported. Forget everything for the moment, except what you are confronted with. Art it is.
I respect your opinion, and I think I understand it. But do you see that I, and others, see and experience art differently, and that our ways of experiencing it are not wrong because they are not the same as yours? There is no 'better' or 'worse' here, just experience and appreciation. Your view seems to be that everyone must experience the intensity of feeling that art awakens in you; the same intense feeling as you.

I do not decry or demean your own appreciation of art; I respect it. But I can't see that it does, should or could apply to all. Some experience only lightweight pleasure from art, and that isn't wrong. Some like pop-music art: here today and gone tomorrow. It's ephemerality is not a failing, it's part of its beauty, its art. Others still, find different pleasures in art. This is as it should be.
Yes I think that way too. I'd rather be open to all notions of what art can be. And sometimes I've looked into pieces I initially dismissed, out of curiousity, and came to get something out of them I'd missed.

For me I think what art does best is capture or communicate something we usually perceive or talk about in a different way, and present it afresh to us in ways which resonate differently, and sometimes more meaningfully. And like you say, that will happen differently for different peeps, even at different times in the same person's life.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Count Lucanor »

gad-fly wrote: April 29th, 2022, 3:09 pm "most of the things that we call "art", such as sculptures, paintings, fiction, poetry, music, dances, movies, etc, are no more than devices that help us engage in surrogate activity via imagination."

A very common mistake is to categorize painting, sculpture, etc., as art. Not necessarily so, I say. What about copying, sketching, etching, taking photos, and so on. Is the product of any creative activity art?

Take that rice bowl in my kitchen. Compare with that jade bowl in an art gallery. Is the bowl art because it is jade? Likely, but not necessarily, even though it may be priced many times more.

What makes a piece of art is that it transmits a sublime message beyond physical value, and beyond the reach of time. The message may be strong or weak, lasting or temporal, soothing or disturbing, benign or malevolent, beautiful or ugly, and so on. How? let me give you two bowls, one clay, and one jade. Hold each one in turn, and tell me the difference, not because you value jade more than clay, but because clay can be more art than jade.

Another common mistake is to take art to be fine, delicate, delicious, exquisite, and so on. Those were the days, when we would relegate pre-civilization scratching on rockface as barbarian past-time.
Your statements lack the depth of historical analysis. Art is defined in different ways, in different times, in different cultures. What you define as true art is just one view that owes a lot to one theory of Aesthetics, but it certainly does not exhaust the others.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by gad-fly »

Count Lucanor wrote: May 29th, 2022, 1:27 pm
Your statements lack the depth of historical analysis. Art is defined in different ways, in different times, in different cultures. What you define as true art is just one view that owes a lot to one theory of Aesthetics, but it certainly does not exhaust the others.
To the extent that art is feeling by active inspiration, art is timeless. The inspiration on you as a person emerges beyond culture, history, age, and any other delineation. Such inspiration may vary between different people: deep, shallow, or none. It may even vary on the same person at different periods of time, but such difference cannot be categorized. For example. it cannot be that a child is inspired less by an artwork than an adult, or that in the Age of Romanticism, people were more inspired by art than us. Hence the talk of historical analysis is irrelevant.

By active inspiration, art does not require your effort to draw out your feeling. In this respect, you are passive. The feeling is imposed on you despite yourself. You cannot say: Wait a minute, to let me think about it. You cannot ask for more inspiration from the same artwork. Nor can you drive it away. The only thing you can do is to let the inspiration run through you. Dodgy, eh? It is almost as if you have been hypnotized.

How do you grapple art? No, you cannot. How do you argue with another: This is art, but that is not. No, you cannot. It is not even the case of you propose and art disposes. You suffer the consequence, period.
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Count Lucanor »

gad-fly wrote: May 31st, 2022, 12:04 pm
Count Lucanor wrote: May 29th, 2022, 1:27 pm
Your statements lack the depth of historical analysis. Art is defined in different ways, in different times, in different cultures. What you define as true art is just one view that owes a lot to one theory of Aesthetics, but it certainly does not exhaust the others.
To the extent that art is feeling by active inspiration, art is timeless. The inspiration on you as a person emerges beyond culture, history, age, and any other delineation. Such inspiration may vary between different people: deep, shallow, or none. It may even vary on the same person at different periods of time, but such difference cannot be categorized. For example. it cannot be that a child is inspired less by an artwork than an adult, or that in the Age of Romanticism, people were more inspired by art than us. Hence the talk of historical analysis is irrelevant.
Art as "feeling by active inspiration" is indeed a particular (modern) definition of art that has a precise historical origin in the Romantic period in Europe, rooted in the emergence of the artist as an individual genius in the Renaissance. There goes your timelessness. Ancient Greeks didn't care that much about feeling and inspiration, and I doubt that African art did it either.
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Pattern-chaser
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by Pattern-chaser »

Count Lucanor wrote: May 29th, 2022, 1:27 pm
Your statements lack the depth of historical analysis. Art is defined in different ways, in different times, in different cultures. What you define as true art is just one view that owes a lot to one theory of Aesthetics, but it certainly does not exhaust the others.
gad-fly wrote: May 31st, 2022, 12:04 pm To the extent that art is feeling by active inspiration, art is timeless. ... How do you grapple art? No, you cannot. How do you argue with another: This is art, but that is not. No, you cannot.
Many times in this topic, a poster has suggested that your way of viewing and appreciating art is not the only way. And many times you have responded with ... a list of assertions of what you think art is and what you think it is not.

I think your view of art is understood by all who have taken an interest in this topic, and that many other useful and interesting ways of appreciating art have been suggested and discussed.

Can the discussion progress from here, or is it over and done?
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Re: What s Art? 3.0

Post by gad-fly »

Pattern-chaser wrote: June 1st, 2022, 7:14 am
your way of viewing and appreciating art is not the only way.

Can the discussion progress from here, or is it over and done?
Of course my way is not the only way. We are here to debate, but not to fight. The more expression of different opinion, the better. I am sorry if you are somewhat frustrated. What can I do to help?

Can the discussion progress from here? Who knows. The forum allows free access and exit.
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