Art???????????????

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Art???????????????

Postby Lance Kennedy » Wed Sep 07, 2016 7:55 pm

http://i.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/arts ... ve-artwork

Is it just me, or does the artwork in the reference above appear to be something that could be done by the average ten year old? And yet it fetched over a million dollars at auction.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Wed Sep 07, 2016 8:23 pm

Kurt Vonnegut: "Art is a conspiracy between the artist and the Rich to make poor people think they are dumb."

Any art you do yourself, for yourself, is worthwhile. Admiring the art of others that you like, can be affirming, worthwhile, and instructional. Buying the art of others is an economic activity mostly manipulated by the Already Too Rich.

However..... I do love talking to art experts who extol the virtues and nuances of crap on the floor. Like stock brokers they are.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Matthew Ellard » Thu Sep 08, 2016 12:46 am

Lance Kennedy wrote: Is it just me, or does the artwork in the reference above appear to be something that could be done by the average ten year old? And yet it fetched over a million dollars at auction.


I'm pretty condescending about bad art.

On one hand I think Marcel Duchamp is a genius, because he did it first and wrote a manifesto to explain what he was doing in 1917. On the other hand, modern crap like this is just crap and shows no genius at all.

I have a general low opinion of modern 2 dimensional visual art. Brett Whiteley, Australia's most famous painter was simply a bad artist who took a lot of smack (heroin) and seems to be more famous for that reason.


Marcel Duchamp "Ready made"
Duchamp.jpg
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Monster » Thu Sep 08, 2016 12:59 am

Anything can be art because what is and isn't art is 100% subjective. Anything that you think is art is art.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Lance Kennedy » Thu Sep 08, 2016 4:01 am

A friend of mine is a retired teacher and now does both writing and art (for money). His definition of art is "anything people will pay good money for." Not a bad definition. But what if the person paying money is a sucker and what he is buying is crap?

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Poodle » Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:14 am

I spent years being snobbish about visual art of one form or another (he says with disarming honesty before being jumped upon by Norma). I've come to the conclusion, though, that art is very personal so it goes like this ...

Do I understand this? Do I like this? Do I like this enough to pay more than I can afford for it? If the answer to any of those questions is no, you're effectively looking at just another object.

So yes, Lance - I agree that whatever that is, it ain't visual art. I'm not au fait enough with NZ heritage to say if it has any literary worth, but I'm going out on a small limb and saying it doesn't. It will, however, catch the attention of those who can sit on their wallets whilst contemplating it.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gord » Thu Sep 08, 2016 8:42 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:A friend of mine is a retired teacher and now does both writing and art (for money). His definition of art is "anything people will pay good money for." Not a bad definition. But what if the person paying money is a sucker and what he is buying is crap?

Then it's art!
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Matthew Ellard » Thu Sep 08, 2016 8:51 am

The Swell Maps "Do you believe in Art?" (1979)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CSVRYVhY6P8

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Thu Sep 08, 2016 9:45 am

Pollock's bollocks always amuse me.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 3:06 am

Modern art isn't necessarily judged by the facility of the artist, and modern art doesn't necessarily center around aesthetics.

The kind of art in question begins mostly as personal expression. If it's successfully promoted and other people relate to it, that artist begins to establish a reputation. If that artist's reputation and fame increases, the monetary value of his or her art rises. If the artist influences subsequent work by others, the artist's reputation grows and the monetary value of his or her work increases to the extent to which someone is willing to pay for it.

The monetary value of the kind of art that finds its way into art collections isn't usually a measure of aesthetic and technical worth; more typically it's a measure of the artist's influence on what came after. The aesthetic quality of a seminal work, like Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, could arguably be duplicated by a first-year art student, but those kinds of comparisons miss the point. Instead, the monetary worth of that particular painting (which is likely incalculable) is a reflection of it widely being considered by art historians as one of the most influential paintings of the 20th Century and a cornerstone of modern art.

I know very little about New Zealand's modern art, but I'm assuming the late Colin McCahon and his artwork have achieved that kind of reputation and influence there.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:14 am

Modern "art" is intended to give people with no actual talent time in the limelight.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Poodle » Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:46 am

Thylacine wrote:Modern art isn't necessarily judged by the facility of the artist, and modern art doesn't necessarily center around aesthetics ...


... then it's high time it got back to being what it SHOULD be, rather than a nagging granny which thinks it can lecture eveyone else.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:02 pm

When I was at Purdue one young man who was convinced that he was the Voice of Modern Art (tm) told me that Constable's "Hay Wain" was "mindlessly representational". I asked him to do better. He said he was busy right then. (We were in a bar drinking beer.)
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 3:24 pm

Poodle wrote:
Thylacine wrote:Modern art isn't necessarily judged by the facility of the artist, and modern art doesn't necessarily center around aesthetics ...


... then it's high time it got back to being what it SHOULD be, rather than a nagging granny which thinks it can lecture eveyone else.


What are the reasons for it needing to be this or that way? You're right, many people can be high-minded and dismissive of what they often term as more pedestrian artwork. Even though I suspect you meant it somewhat tongue in cheek, your statement does much the same by declaring that your preferences in art should prevail.

Most art, and modern art in particular, stems from the self-expression and personal artistic exploration of the artist. If that self-expression involves drizzling paint on a canvas instead of painting a seascape, it's the artist's choice to make for whatever reasons the artist might have. If some people like or collect this or that type of art, I see no reason why those personal preferences should elicit passionate objections from others whose personal preferences differ. Seems a bit like staking out an opinion and arguing over which is better, Coke or Pepsi.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 3:32 pm

Talent and skill are not issues then?
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:13 pm

If one defines artistic "talent and skill" as the abilities needed to draw, paint or sculpt attractive representations of something else, no, they're not prerequisites in modern art. They're often used in modern art, but they're not essential to it.

For that matter, the assumption that modern artists don't possess those talents and skills is often incorrect. Many artists just get a bit bored with making what they're doing look like something else, so they choose to head off in different directions that hold more personal interest.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:19 pm

Thylacine wrote:If one defines artistic "talent and skill" as the abilities needed to draw, paint or sculpt attractive representations of something else, no, they're not prerequisites in modern art. They're often used in modern art, but they're not essential to it.

For that matter, the assumption that modern artists don't possess those talents and skills is often incorrect. Many artists just get a bit bored with making what they're doing look like something else, so they choose to head off in different directions that hold more personal interest.

BS.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:26 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:BS.


Not exactly a well-reasoned argument, but I'd like to read one — assuming you have one, of course. ;)

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:36 pm

Thylacine wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:BS.


Not exactly a well-reasoned argument, but I'd like to read one — assuming you have one, of course. ;)

You are a typical believer. Different god, same arguments. :roll:
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:55 pm

So you don't have a reasoned argument? Just declarative statements?

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 4:58 pm

I don't bother arguing with religious believers either, so don't feel bad. I used up all my patience in fourteen years at Purdue.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:04 pm

OK. Declining the challenge to defend your position is fine.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:08 pm

Thylacine wrote:OK. Declining the challenge to defend your position is fine.

Disdaining, you mean. I saw a clump of cow dung with a feather stuck in it entered in a art show once. It is the icon of modern "art". :lol:
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Poodle » Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:19 pm

At this point, Thylacine, I think you should be giving us your idea of what art actually is (yes, I know that's huge, but then we'd have a starting point).

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:26 pm

We know talent and skill aren't needed, which means bird poop on the windshield could be sold as a Vincent van Gull.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:27 pm

My personal speculation (and you are welcome to disagree) is that modern abstract art was a response to photography. There was no abstract art before the first photos, but it developed quickly thereafter. My speculation is that artists before that showed their merit with 'photographically correct' representations of reality, but could not compete with a simple photo afterwards, and branched out into the abstract. The merits or otherwise of the abstract art is personal of course. I hate it, but that is just me. Maybe I am 'artistically challenged'?

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:37 pm

I find a lot of "art" expressed in the special effects used by movies. Good thing too as plot, theme, and character development are virtually missing. Lots of the current dredge can be appreciated with the sound off. some truly spectacular and imaginative.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:59 pm

Lance Kennedy wrote:My personal speculation (and you are welcome to disagree) is that modern abstract art was a response to photography. There was no abstract art before the first photos, but it developed quickly thereafter. My speculation is that artists before that showed their merit with 'photographically correct' representations of reality, but could not compete with a simple photo afterwards, and branched out into the abstract. The merits or otherwise of the abstract art is personal of course. I hate it, but that is just me. Maybe I am 'artistically challenged'?

I think people know the difference between a machine produced image and something done by a human being with the talent and skill to take the person there on a "perfect day". A five year old can snap a picture with a cell phone, but it doesn't count as art unless one's standards are impossibly low.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Lance Kennedy » Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:23 pm

Gawd.

That is pretty obvious.
But that would not stop an artist being annoyed he cannot 'beat' a photo and turning to abstract, from the point of view that you cannot snap an abstract. Of course, these days you can do abstract photos using photoshop, but that is more recent.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Sun Sep 11, 2016 9:49 pm

Lance Kennedy wrote:Gawd.

That is pretty obvious.
But that would not stop an artist being annoyed he cannot 'beat' a photo and turning to abstract, from the point of view that you cannot snap an abstract. Of course, these days you can do abstract photos using photoshop, but that is more recent.

Considering that abstract has no bounds, no definition, you can do almost anything you want with it. But calling it art requires a bit more of a standard.
For example. In Ironman 2 Pepper is furious when Tony wants to sell some "famous" artist's "masterpiece", which is a white canvas with a single rectangle of black on it. Reminded me of my first day with MS Paint. :roll:
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Matthew Ellard » Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:11 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:My personal speculation (and you are welcome to disagree) is that modern abstract art was a response to photography. There was no abstract art before the first photos, but it developed quickly thereafter.


OK. Your dates are good. The daguerreotype photo is just before the start of the Impressionists. The Impressionists were not known for their manifestos but the post Impressionists were and they directly commented on light and issues comparative to photography. I'll accept your suggestion as very probable.

I follow the view, proposed by Robert Hughes, that the lower classes were starting to have access to high art and disposable income and it was a rebellion against the classical upper class academies that spawned "radicals".

"The Salon des Refusés, is generally an exhibition of works rejected by the jury of official awards but the term is most famously used to refer to the Salon des Refusés of 1863."

The exhibition program for the Salon des Refusés lists 780 works by 64 sculptors and 366 painters, along with a small number of printmakers and architects. Famous painters whose works were shown, included: Edouard Manet (1832-83), Gustave Courbet (1819-77), Paul Cezanne (1839-1906), Camille Pissarro (1830-1903), Johan Jongkind (1819-1891), James Whistler (1834-1903) and Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904).

Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe was basically insulting classical art and the academies.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:42 am

For the sake of full disclosure, I got my BFA and MFA in visual arts, even though my career headed off in another direction. So I guess that could be considered either education or indoctrination.

Poodle wrote:At this point, Thylacine, I think you should be giving us your idea of what art actually is (yes, I know that's huge, but then we'd have a starting point).

There are lots of definitions in a dictionary, but for the purpose of answering your question, art is whatever one chooses to think of as artistic. Art to one person might not be art to the next. Modern art, it appears, isn't artistic to many here.

What is tasty? What is beautiful? What is annoying? Like art, these things are subjective descriptions that reflect people's subjective opinions.

Lance Kennedy wrote:My personal speculation (and you are welcome to disagree) is that modern abstract art was a response to photography.

No, I agree. You're right.

Édouard Manet's Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe (shown above in Matthew's post) is widely considered to be the seminal precursor of modern art. It looks quite traditional by today's standards, but at the time, its deviation from the norms of the day caused quite a stir in the art world. It was painted in 1862, which as you noted, was roughly the period when photography started to become more commonplace.

Pure abstraction, where artists just threw in the towel on any attempt at incorporating subject matter, didn't occur until well into the 20th Century, but it could still be partially attributable to photography, motion pictures and the introduction of color into both of those mediums that prompted some artists to explore alternatives. There's really much more to it than that, though, but I'd end up writing a half dozen pages of didactic stuff that nobody's interested in reading.

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:But calling it art requires a bit more of a standard.

Fine Art has its roots in personal expression — not in the constraints imposed by other people's pronouncements of what it should and shouldn't be. Artistic standards are matters of both personal opinion and situationally specific relevance. Modern artworks that attain a level of monetary and historical value are typically judged according to shared standards that make sense within the context of their relationships to the societies in which it's created and valued. You might not like much about modern art, but your tastes are yours. Other people's tastes are equally valid. Unlike physics, biology or other sciences, there are no definitive rights or wrongs awaiting discovery and verification. Art is mostly subjective and open to interpretation in various ways that resonate with some and not with others.

Personally, I don't like Colin McCahon's The Canoe Tainui. To me, it appears to be no more interesting than a series of menus written on chalkboards in a pub. But that opinion only speaks to my ignorance of its significance to New Zealand's contemporary art world. Do I think it's worth the $1.35 million paid for it? I don't know. I know almost nothing about it, the artist or why art collectors think it's so important. I suspect that if I researched the artist and the contextual relevance of this piece, I'd come to appreciate it it more. I would still probably not like it, but liking is different from appreciation.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:46 am

More BS.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Matthew Ellard » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:09 am

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:More BS.
I think Thylacine is being accurate and honest

If you guys want an artwork to argue about, I'd offer Kazimir Malevich's "White on white" (1918). That's forty years before Jackson Pollock re-invented Abstract Impressionism.

Malevich White on white.jpg


I'm very old fashioned and see art as important if it belongs to an art movement, complete with a manifesto explaining why the artwork exists. I have no interest in its monetary value. Malevich belonged to the Russian Suprematists movement,

I also accept that there are some artists, who don't belong to movements who just "do something interesting", like Yves Tanguy on their own.

Indefinite_Divisibility.jpg


Gawdzilla would know Yves Tanguy from hundreds of covers of 1950's paperback science fiction novels, who used his art simply because it is so weird looking.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:12 am

Yeah, I wish I still had that box of pulp scifi.

But I do get tired of the party line when it comes art these days. I think the lame have overcome the field.
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Lance Kennedy » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:31 am

There is no doubt that art is personal and subjective. My own view is that much modern and abstract stuff is valueless, even when it sells for millions. (Does that make sense?). There is some art, like Salvadore Dali, which is quite abstract but clearly incredible. There is other art, which looks to me like a chimpanzee could do better.

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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gawdzilla Sama » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:33 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:There is no doubt that art is personal and subjective. My own view is that much modern and abstract stuff is valueless, even when it sells for millions. (Does that make sense?). There is some art, like Salvadore Dali, which is quite abstract but clearly incredible. There is other art, which looks to me like a chimpanzee could do better.

A chimp wouldn't glue cigarette butts to a canvas. :roll:
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:39 am

Lance Kennedy wrote:There is no doubt that art is personal and subjective. My own view is that much modern and abstract stuff is valueless, even when it sells for millions. (Does that make sense?).


Yeah, it makes sense. Similarly, I can't tolerate rap and hip-hop, and fail to see why anyone likes the stuff. So it has no value to me, but I do recognize that this is just a reflection of my personal tastes in music.

My own personal likes in visual art (the kind of thing I hang on my walls) mostly tends toward the traditional and graphic arts. My own artwork, oddly enough, doesn't reflect those personal tastes, and heads more toward tight abstractions that mostly only allude to actual subject matter. I suspect viewing and doing occupy two different spots in my head.

Even though my admission in my university's art program was the result of my drawing ability, I never really enjoyed the tedium of drawing, disliked the continuous life drawing classes, and shifted gears in grad school toward exploring aspects of the creative process that held more personal fascination.

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Gord
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby Gord » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:03 am

Hi, Thylacine. :wave:

Speaking of art reminds me of the kid who put his glasses and his hat on a museum floor to see if people would think they were works of art: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/31/arts/ ... prank.html

I'm part of the Mr. Burns school of thought on art: "You know, I'm no art critic, but I know what I hate."
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Re: Art???????????????

Postby corymaylett » Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:33 am

Gord wrote:Hi, Thylacine. :wave:

Speaking of art reminds me of the kid who put his glasses and his hat on a museum floor to see if people would think they were works of art: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/31/arts/ ... prank.html


Hi Gord. I saw the following a few weeks ago and saved it.

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