Art is art.

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by sobeystudio, May 14, 2009.

  1. A fellow PNster said "Art is art. There is no need to intellectualize it"
  2. Stating that there's no need to intellectualize art is the very essence of intellectualizing it.
  3. Matt-
    So you suppose it was inner conflict or rational?
  4. I suspect it was simply a case of being weary of "what is art" discussions. It's easy to get burned out on those.
  5. Okay..... ehh, wasn't it time for coffee break already?
  6. I actually agree that "art is art" ... it's a signifier for which each of us has a clear image, but trying to bring the definitions into both concentricity and coextensiveness leads to their loss of resolution.
    There is also no need to intellectualise it ... but that doesn't mean that it is wrong to apply the intellect to it. For me, personally, intellect is part of practice. I find it difficult t understand why anyone comes into a "philosophy of photography" forum and then objects to finding use of intellect there.
  7. What Felix said! Especially his second paragraph.
    I mean I'd actually take exception with the "art is art" statement being too special except as it is poetic and captures something significant in a mostly non-literal way. For me, art lies in some combination of the qualities we are used to hearing given to it historically. And it lies in a lot of disagreement about those qualities.
    I mean it's also great to say "pornography is pornography" and sound all cute and like you've got it all wrapped up. But you start throwing in words like sex, nudity, erection, penetration and there will likely be disagreements but everyone knows you're kind of at least near the same page or at least the same chapter in the book.
    You start talking about taste, painting, sculpture, beauty, aesthetics, expressionism, museum, dada, gallery, frame, critic, representation, catharsis, and you're getting into a little more nitty-gritty than "art is art" and there will be some controversies and disagreement, a variety of perspectives, but everyone will pretty much know what you're talking about and it will likely give you more to go on, especially if you're just learning to speak or think, regarding art. On the other hand if your talking about joists and floorboards, nails and glue, you could be talking about art but you're probably more likely talking about something else. I think a lot of us have more of a general agreement on what art is than a completely and utterly subjective definition of it.
    Furthermore, we take very rational approaches to non- or irrational things all the time. Psychiatrists study all kinds of irrational behaviors and yet they approach it rather rationally. If there is a large aspect of art that is not so rational, there's no reason why it can't be discussed rationally. Generally, we're not in this forum making art, we're talking about it. That seems often to get overlooked.
  8. Truth alone does not exist,
    Seek beauty if thou desirest peace.
    Ancient Greek Poem
  9. "Well, Art is Art, isn't it? Still, on the other hand, water is water. And east is east, and west is west, and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce, they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. NOW tell me what you know" -GROUCHO MARX
  10. I always liked Groucho Marx. My brain is starting to feel like rhubarb stew! Thanks Ricardo.
    Fred- I guess I'm trying, in some ways, to wrap it all up- when in fact it flourishes with freedom. Nice insight, as the original quote was probably used in the larger context...but still, even if someone is just using "art" as a third party/objective noun type of word, musn't it be understood that intellectual behavior is part of it?
    JDM- My wife and kids are quite beautiful. This particular Greek poet must have been speaking of flowers or sunsets! :)
  11. Art is not is something that is by nature indefinite.
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  13. Intellectualism is necessary in art. I find ideas regarding childhood art and 'Art Brut' highly relevant. Children continue to grow and thusly are always intellectualizing their work, albeit with a limited vocabulary. As they mature so does their art- it becomes more complex as does the child's ability to render it. So, maybe art isn't necessarily being intellectualized conciously as much as it shows a capacity for intellectual growth in the child artist. Artist Paul Klee- "if my works sometimes produce a primitive impression, this "primitiveness" is explained by my discipline, which consists of reducing everything to a few steps. It is no more than economy; that is the ultimate professional awareness, which is to say the opposite of real primitiveness." I feel that would support the idea of the artist having the capacity for intellectual growth- an any age- the difference being the awareness of this "capacity" as an adult artist. Art therefore, no matter the level of execution or by whom, requires the bare minimum of intellectual capacity to even exist in the first place.
    "reductionism would not be possible were it not for the irreducible complexity of the mind." -Husserl
  14. I think that Keats said it well in the last stanza of his "Ode on a Grecian Urn":
    O Attic shape! fair attitude! with brede
    Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
    With forest branches and the trodden weed;
    Thou, silent form! dost tease us out of thought
    As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral!
    When old age shall this generation waste,
    Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
    Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say'st,
    'Beauty is truth, truth beauty,โ€”that is all
    Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.'
  15. "Intellectualism is necessary in art."​
    I thik that you are actually right, Martin. It is interesting that Keats (above) said that "Thou silent form dost tease us out of thought as doth eternity. . . ."
    But then he proceeds to think some more. . . .
  16. Before you can begin to place intellect and art in the same sentence one needs to be clear what form of intellect is applied to art. Emotional intelligence is the fundamental basis on which art is born and bread. Rational thought/ academic intellect serves as nothing more than to blur artistic intentions and to detach the audience from the artist IMHO.
    I fail to see how intellectualism (as applied in this forum) is necessary to express or understand emotions, thoughts, desires etc... on canvas, in stone, in words or melodies, or in any other genre of art.
    Art has been the basis by which civilizations have defined themselves throughout history (there are countless examples). Born out of the ebbs and flows of collective emotions, 'art', throughout history, may be viewed with 'intellectualism' (I use this word very loosely here), but that doesn't imply its necessity for art to exist in the first place, or for that matter its appreciation
  17. ART X - "Emotional intelligence is the fundamental basis on which art is born and bread"

    What do you mean- emotions are the only thing necessary to the creation of art? Yes, expressionism is a part of art, but not the whole of it. By the mere fact one calls something art, it has been intellectualized. With the title "art" comes a whole laundry list of understandings and ideas, not all great, but long none the less. This, possibly, is why people disagree as to what constitutes "art". Now that is where emotions come into play. -Martin
  18. emotional intelligence is the ability to view the world and be 'aware/reflective'. It is not something that can be read and learnt in a book. You can appreciate (intellectualize) form, technique, composition, discuss it and agree or disagree in its presentation; but the meaning of what IS art is a personal experience, and one based on the emotional filters applied to it. Discussing a painting/photograph etc... isnt what makes it a work of art, understanding it's meaning based on its history (why it was conceived and created) and its personal appeal (internalizing what is peceived) perhaps does IMO. To be 'educated' academically doesn't automatically imply the ability to intellectualize art. I have know great artist who have not finished beyond 6th grade.
  19. ART X-
    I agree, an "education" is not necessary to make art. I think we are both using semantics to get our points across. Emotions and life perception are necessary to make "art". When I say "intellectualize'" I am talking about the most basic form of learned understanding, for which without, the very making of art would be impossible (such as with 2 year old children). Art does not necessarily need to be intellectualized when viewing it, but most likely your experience and understanding will be heightened by doing so.
  20. Martin I think youre right, with that interpretation of intelligence:)
  21. Art is intellectual. By its basic shape, form colour, hue, is a product of a person intellect. The need to express and ability to depict a scene, a person, a place, an object all requires the use of intellect be it in remembering, theoretically visualising and placing onto the chosen media is the result of intelligence and subsequently intellect.
  22. "Art is art. There is no need to intellectualize it".
    Yes, art is art, you don't need to intellectualize it. You may intellectualize it, you may not.
    Art is freedom.
  23. Tee hee... trying putting any form of emotional expression together without thinking.
    Imagine all your brain cells wiped clean, not one iota, not one jot or tittle left and try and express yourself....... no speech, no memory af action, of co-ordination, of colours of shapes just nothing.
    Then refresh and apply all the human thought processes .. opps but that intellect.
    Oh dear. back to square one.
    The active intellect was the subject of much intense discussion in medieval philosophy. The idea is first encountered in Aristotle's De Anima , in which he discusses the human mind and distinguishes between the active and passive intellects. Aristotle says that the passive intellect receives the intelligible forms of things, but that the active intellect is required to make the potential knowledge into actual knowledge, in the same way that light makes potential colors into actual colors.
    The ability to think abstractly or profoundly.
  24. Jack- well said, and nice reference. It fits quite well into this forum. The concepts of passive and active intellect are also quite important here, as they are both required, in my opinion, where "art" is concerned. Even if we are to look at the concepts of "sub-conscious" used by the surrealists, we are still talking of a part of intellect.
    Stamoulis- It has been said, "True freedom is free of history". Thusly art is not freedom- practically opposing actually. We can only attempt to free ourselves of our histories. Picasso said (or Klee or Miro, it's up for debate who actually said it), "It took me a lifetime to think like a child".

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