3uGH7D4MLj wrote:Hi JBL, I hope my use of the word is cleared up by my reply to Aristocles. Good art, bad art, certainly. Art you like, art you don't like, certainly, but it's all art.
Indeed it did, thank you 3u. I would be most curious to know what your standards are for differentiating good art from bad art.
3uGH7D4MLj wrote:Think of the word clothing. Made by clothiers, sold in clothing stores, good, bad, indifferent, expensive, cheap, but it's all clothing. Whyever is this so hard?
Your definition is not at all hard
, 3u; on the contrary, it is of enticing simplicity. I recognize its charms, but I resist them, because I think that art is in a state of dissolution precisely due precisely to the sentiment that “with art, no rules is the rule.” If we are to take that statement seriously, I do not know how we can suppose any limits to “art” whatsoever. I think that you yourself recognize certain rules, if only very generic ones, in the following:
3uGH7D4MLj wrote:Saying something is art doesn't make it art. Saying that the void of space is art is just a wrong statement. The void of space satisfies none of the usual expectations of art. Not an object, not made by an artist, not displayed on a pedestal or on the wall, not sold in a gallery, not performed in a concert hall or club, why would anyone ever say that the void of space is art? A six-year old would correct you.
My question is, can we count even on these very general rules? You seem to believe that there are natural boundaries in art, as in clothing, which will prohibit any sound-minded observer from making categorical mistakes. If, for example, I point to a chair and call it clothing, you will know immediately that I am either delusional or jesting or foolish. The same should hold for art, so why bother passing long hours in futile debate over a mere definition, for which we will sooner later find an exception anyway? In other words, you are proposing, if I am not mistaken, that we cannot define art, but that we know it when we see it.
The problem, 3u, is that what a child might tell me today about art, is radically different than what a child might have told me, say, one-hundred years ago, when any child would certainly have corrected me if I had attempted to call a diamond-studded platinum skull a work of art, or a canvas covered in nothing but a grid. Our idea of what falls under the category “art” has undergone a shocking enlargement in the past hundred years, no doubt in large part to the transgressive nature of modern art, which you have encapsulated so perfectly with your comment that the only rule in art, is that there are no rules. But then, we cannot draw firm limits to what art will be in one hundred years, and it might well be that what today would never be considered art (say, mastadons or murder or empty space), might be considered art by future generations.
3uGH7D4MLj wrote:I don't think there is a great danger of people defining random things as art, or mastodons for that matter.
I would claim on the contrary that there is precisely this
danger, of randomness in art. I think investigation into the justification given for the building of certain modern buildings (consider for example the Beijing National Stadium) will support me in this. Tell me what is not random about a blank canvas? Or one smeared with feces? Or a “musical concert” of four minutes thirty three seconds in which no instrument is allowed to play? Or a shark in an aquarium filled with formaldehyde? You yourself have seen an exhibit of the “art” produced by bees. We have come to a point, 3u, in which we cannot simply let the matter rest at the common sense of six-year-olds, and unless we are willing to say with all due abandonment that anything goes in art, we must begin to attempt to understand if there are
any natural limits to the artistic.