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''Is this art, or can I throw it away?''

Discussion in 'Symphony X (Unofficial)' started by Frontal Lobotomy, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. Frontal Lobotomy

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    I have really tried to find a thread about art on this forum but have failed miserably. (Did you know that there are over 100 pages of threads on this forum!?:yow:) If there is such a thread, I beg the Mods for forgiveness and ask them to post me the link to the thread and close this one down.

    The background:
    A couple of days ago my friends and I went to Tate Modern, which is a museum of modern art here in London. Happy was I, when we started with the surrealists, to find a Salvador Dali that I hadn't seen before. Loved it. His paintings remind me of my most fantastical dreams and I can really get lost for a long time in any one of them, continually seeing new things. I appreciate the effort and the talent and the way he completely draws me in. This is true for many artists, but he is my favourite.

    Now, I should mention that I am not a fan of all art, quite far from it. Improv dancing and crap like that have always ticled my sucidal bone, but not until Tate Modern did I know that other types of art can do the same.

    So here is the big question: Is art subjective or objective? I am not talking about taste here. I am talking about what art is, when can we define it as art, and who decides. There are some things out there that I sincerely don't like, but I can still appreciate the artistic merit. I can appreciate the effort, the talent, the style. I can appreciate that someone has made something and spent time doing it, even if I think it's an ugly piece of crap. Which brings me to...installation. W...T...F...? If anyone can explain this to me in a way where I will at least understand why it is considered art, I will be very grateful.

    (Sorry about the very long post and the huge pictures! For some reason only two of them appear in the resized form:bah:)

    Ok, here they are:

    [​IMG]

    The fascinting thing about this is that it is a over 2 metres tall canvas. Could I do it? Probably. Did it take long? I doubt it. To me it looks like something made out of sheer boredom and lack of inspiration with some sort of a deadline looming. Is it art simply because it is a painting? If the painting is put up in a very small room, so that it covers the entire wall, is it then a painted wall and does it stop being art?

    [​IMG]

    Ok...what?

    [​IMG]

    Yes, this is a sheet of white paper on a white wall. ''It's direction is changed every day by the artist.'' Too bad it doesn't change into going...going...gone. My mom moves the paintings in her living room about twice a month. Can I call it installation art? Or simple boredom?

    [​IMG]

    This is an egg piece that is supposed to symbolize the beginning of the universe. I can certainly appreciate the work put into it, and it is quite impressive (over 2 metres tall, I think). If someone told me it was a phone booth I would have thought it impressively artistic. However, it is just an egg shaped thingy. In the undying words of George Carlin: ''I leave the symbols to the symbol-minded.''

    [​IMG]

    ''Venus of Rags'' Well, at least some of them recycle... Nothing was made by the artist, it was just put together by him. Art?

    [​IMG]

    This one is not from Tate Modern, I would just like someone to explain to me why the hell this is art. Please, if possible...

    [​IMG]

    This is how many times I've gone to the shop and forgotten to buy Nutella. If I call it ''memory number 5'', can I exhibit it as a work of art?



    Does anyone have pictures of artwork that fits with the title of this thread? Btw, the title is from a German facebook-type site my friend told me about.
     
  2. ABQShredHead

    ABQShredHead ©1970

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    Yeah, people are all too liberal in the use of the word "art" these days. I can say, that second-to-last picture with the rock and the whatever that gray sheet thing in the foreground is, is a very artful photograph, if you took it. But, no, not my idea of art here. I can't stomach the crap these exhibits today show us. (former art major ;))
     
  3. Marwen

    Marwen Five Align

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    ;)

    Basically, it stops being the random nonsense that it is and starts being art to you the moment you start thinking it is art. Nietzsche once said "We are all prone to think that the excellence of a work of art or of an artist is proved when it moves and touches us. But there our own excellence in judgement and sensibility must have been proved first, which is not the case." If somebody choses to ignore all the artistic beauty in this wondrous universe and decides it is better to pay money for and stare at some red rectangle, or a sheet of white paper, then I guess that tells a great deal about this person's taste.

    Is there any beauty outside the realm of the classical, the traditional, the established "rules"? Most certainly. Is this so called "modern art" the product of such transcendence, of reaching out to higher and newer realms of beauty? Hardly.
     
  4. Marwen

    Marwen Five Align

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    Speaking of this, I remember once watching an experiment some guys did on some tv show did where they let a bunch of children/babies mess around with all colors and stuff over a blank painting sheet, then they showed the end result to about 5 critics specialized in modern art and asked them to analyse/interpret it (without telling them how it was made).

    If I remember correctly, only one of them couldn't comment, the rest went on giving these interpretations and critique and stuff. Imagine their face when they realized how the painting was made. :tickled:
     
  5. Thudd

    Thudd Member

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    Let's take the red rectangle. It interested you and it got you thinking and talking about it and searching for meaning. Is that enough for it to be art?
     
  6. Marwen

    Marwen Five Align

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    ^ Well first of all I don't believe Art is supposed to be about "thinking" (intellect) but feeling. I believe we humans have come a long way in areas of intellect, will power, science/technology, etc. but are terribly falling behind in the area of "feeling" on a collective level (humanity's lack of empathy being one symptom). I blame the education system, the political system, and religious fanaticism throughout history for such imbalance. I also tend to believe that if nothing is done about such imbalance, humanity is pretty much scheduled for a self-inflicted extinction in the future (à la Atlantis). The real message of Art is to get you in touch with that aspect of you as a human being, to feel; be it enjoyment, sadness, epicness, whatever.

    Coming back to your question, trying to force a mere red rectangle into being a work of Art and highjacking all kinds of "thinking" and "analysis" on it is obviously an act of pseudo-intellectualism that is to be kept seperate from real Art, if not ridiculed. So my answer is: Come on, no.
     
  7. Kenneth R.

    Kenneth R. Cináed

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    I will cite the number of potential responses to this topic as proof that art is subjective.

    To me, art is the conveyance of purpose through the vehicle of media. Vague enough for you? It should be.
     
  8. Frontal Lobotomy

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    Hmmm...if it is truly subjective, why then is there a consensus about things like installation? I'm not saying that there is a consensus about if something is a good piece or not, that is again taste, but a consensus about whether it is an installation piece of art or not and whether it actually means something or if it is completely meaningless and pompous. Like the white sheet on the white wall. What is the purpose there? It didn't really say. Am I supposed to read something into it? It made me feel nothing but annoyance...so maybe it is art then...

    The explanations of the purpose for some of the pieces seemed so vague and lofty that I just couldn't see it. Not just me, either. I heard several people in the gallery complain about that. I also got some very displeased looks from artsy-fartsy older ladies when I called something crap (I said it to my friends, they were not supposed to listen in on it anyway). These people are considered artists, and have and probably will continue to exhibit other or same pieces in other galleries around the world. Now, would a gallery be able to refuse an artist simply if the curator, or whomever in charge, doesn't see it as art? Is it very probable that one curator from another will have a different opinion on what is considered art and what is not after the artist had established him- or herself?

    Here is a quote about installation from the web:

    Sounds like vandalism to me. So they rebelled against the conventional perception of art. Fine. But by braking it down to something lesser? To nothing? I'm sorry, putting a marble in a 10x10m white room and calling it ''the universe'' to convey the meaning of actual space and the fact that the earth is so small and meaningless and thereby making our lives in the universe meaningless, or some crap like that, is not art in the same respect as a Picasso, Monet or Gauguin. It does not begin to touch the artistry of statues and cameos of ancient Rome. Nothing is created. It feels like they totally broke every boundary possible. So if anything can be considered art, why then do we have modern art galleries? This space could be used to house the homeless or as schools or hospitals. At least then they would have value. To consider things like these art, is in my opinion an insult to people with actual talent.

    Attempt at making this thread relevant:

    I can see the artfulness in the Iconoclast covers, though I find them utterly hideous. But I'm thinking, maybe that's the idea. The technology is not supposed to be pretty (although they do try with the I-phones and I-pads and what-nots), and the album is exactly about that. The horrible state and place we find ourselves in. I think it is scary that so many children today use computers so much that they never develop their own individual handwriting! It's the same with Mulholland Drive for me. I hated it. To me it was completely pointless. However, if the point is never to understand what is happening, and every time you get close to a potential answer, something in the movie always crushes your theory, than I consider that aspect to be genious. You see, I like analyzing things (although done at a very superficial level here), but installation seems too random and simple for me to even bother. I feel provoked by the insult to the human intellect.
     
  9. SolarLuna96

    SolarLuna96 Member

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    I liked the egg thingy
     
  10. Postulate

    Postulate Have a nice day! :)

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    Is this even true? Art seems just as hoighty-toighty and confined to museums nowadays, even if it does look different.
     
  11. Ryan M.

    Ryan M. Theocratic Fanatic

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    ya it was probably the best of all of the ones... the nutella in second (cuz nutella is epic ;) hahaha). Wow yea... these are NOT art. Art takes work. It's about creativity BUT it takes WORK to release these creative energies. Am I right? I enjoy art and make all sorts of Geometric abstraction and such things. I find it fun... but I work HARD on them. :zzz:
     
  12. Prog is King

    Prog is King Member

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    I totally agree. It amazes me what passes for art sometimes. But I guess that's why there are so many
    art genres. I don't think all art is equal. Putting a crucifix in a jar of piss is not art. Though there are
    some people who will hold that up to a painting by one of the masters, Rembrandt, Picasso, DaVinci etc..
    and say they compare. Personally, I respect true artistic talent. Where are artists like Michaelangelo or
    Bernini today? I someday hope to go to Italy to see much of the greatest art ever produced in history.
     
  13. Sep3

    Sep3 Member

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    I think we had a bowl of human feces for display a few years ago in the contemporary art museum in Helsinki. This is not even a joke.
     
  14. Wander

    Wander 10+2=6

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    Most art is crap.
     
  15. J-Dubya 777

    J-Dubya 777 It NEVER ends

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    There was a big stir here in the states a few years ago over an upside down cross in a jar of urine that was part of a state sponsored "artist" :mad:
     
  16. Frontal Lobotomy

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    probably because..

    ? :tickled:

    But seriously who decides that it is art? If a person had a jar of picled crap in his living room, his family would probably have him committed. A Brazilian or Argentinian, or something like that, artist wanted to starve a stray dog in public a few years ago as an installation piece. I don't think he was allowed to do that, I hope not at least! I don't think we're that far from allowing something like that as art, though. And the people who allow it would probably refuse a parallell to gladiator fights and public hangings. Art and entertainment often go hand in hand in these modern times...

    As for the upside down cross in urine, I equate it to burning a flag or drawing caricatures of Muhammed. It is a statement meant to piss people off, nothing more.

    Which brings me to another question...well, actually two: Is categorising something as ''art'' potentially dangerous, since a modern artist's aim seems to be to try and push the limits further and further? And: Who is to decide what is allowed and what is not, if we look apart from things which are considered under the law?

    How about a drug addict shooting up in public in a gallery? They already do it in the streets without the police doing anything about it, so why should a modern art gallery be different? At least the kids don't go there - voluntarily that is.
     
  17. Sep3

    Sep3 Member

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    Fine arts! Bowl of crap, piece of railway track hanging in the roof, picture of rodent entrails, banana in an empty room. Where's the art in that, seriously? That's not even abstract, it's just disgusting. They are just fooling people. ANYONE doing ANYTHING abstract should prove themselves by being able to do something... normal... or even less freaky at first, before they e.g. start painting with their feet, no matter how artistic they think it is.

    Our big stir actually wasn't the crap exhibition, that's actually quite a minor case. Much bigger incident was about this local arts university professor who made a video about killing a cat with an axe and throwing his love juices on it. Now THATS sick. Artists like that should just nail themselves on the wall and call it a freak show.
     
  18. Thudd

    Thudd Member

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    How far do you go with that then? The first thing that came to mind when I read your response was some of Andy Warhol's work like the Campbell's Soup Cans - dull, banal, mundane, emotionless, unaesthetic, yet they are regarded as icons of modern art. At least the red rectangle is a pleasant shade of red and makes for a nice splash of colour on the wall!

    In fact, some of the meaning and analysis of the soup cans strikes me as exactly what you're complaining about: trying to force meaning onto something that frankly doesn't have it.

    What about Van Gogh's Sunflowers? They're just... flowers. Skillfully painted, perhaps, but that's about it. Not art, then? (or should I say Art?)
     
  19. Marwen

    Marwen Five Align

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    [​IMG]
     
  20. Prog is King

    Prog is King Member

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    ^ That's Michael Angelo, not Michaelangelo. Although I really love them both!
     

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