What is "Fine Art"?

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Vaughn

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Are you sure? I was not around then, but perhaps you were.

Got the word from my granddaddy...language was invented by an art critic with prostate issues.

 

Don Heisz

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If I say 'bird', you A: conjure up an image in your mind of a bird. But is it the bird I am thinking of when I say 'bird'?

In this instance, the name enables the identification. You say "bird" and I understand, not imaginarily (picture-image) but conceptually (the same way I would be able to recognize something in the world as a "bird"). It's not whatever you think that makes a word mean what it does, but what is generally or specifically (in context) understood by it.
 

greg zinselmeier

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it's about the discourse.

true, it is about the discourse. However one(person) is indicating and naming ( that is going about the business of defining art, language, etc. . . .) contradicts the intuitive. so it becomes moot. that is the naming and pointing, identifying. . .etc. . the intuitve is a place you do not, nor do I have access to, hence that is why it called the intuitve.it is nothing we can comprehend. it just is. that's all folks
 

jnamia

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true, it is about the discourse. However one(person) is indicating and naming ( that is going about the business of defining art, language, etc. . . .) contradicts the intuitive. so it becomes moot. that is the naming and pointing, identifying. . .etc. . the intuitve is a place you do not, nor do I have access to, hence that is why it called the intuitve.it is nothing we can comprehend. it just is. that's all folks

sorry I don't really understand what you wrote. what is moot ?
 

TheFlyingCamera

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In this instance, the name enables the identification. You say "bird" and I understand, not imaginarily (picture-image) but conceptually (the same way I would be able to recognize something in the world as a "bird"). It's not whatever you think that makes a word mean what it does, but what is generally or specifically (in context) understood by it.

My point is that "bird" (or any other noun like it) is an abstraction - it's non-specific. Yes, we agree that "bird" describes an animal with wings and feathers that lays eggs. But beyond that, there is so much variation that describing a bird by just using the word bird is inherently ambiguous. I'm not saying language has no meaning. But because language is an always-imprecise stand-in for the thing it represents, it is open to misinterpretation and misunderstanding. Living where I live, having the experiences I have had, when I hear the word "bird", my mind automatically starts with certain characteristics - small-ish, can fly, probably has some characteristic vocalization, most often some shade of brown or black or gray, lives in trees or water. But if I were from Antarctica, the first bird that will come to mind is a penguin. Or if I am from the right parts of Africa, it might be an ostrich. So if I'm talking to the person from Antarctica and start talking about birdsong in the trees, they're going to do a double-take. Or if I mention to the African person that I had a three-egg omelette for breakfast, they're going to think I am an obscenely gluttonous pig to consume a three ostrich egg omelette (and probably offer me a fistful of statins to help with my cholesterol).
 

Don Heisz

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language is an always-imprecise stand-in for the thing it represents, it is open to misinterpretation and misunderstanding

It is also by virtue of that that language is open to interpretation and understanding. However, language is far more than a stand-in for something else. Language is something in-itself and can be applied to the various things and events in the world in a meaningful way.
 

Arthurwg

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I think its an interesting thing that one person might see something and point to it and say ART and another might look at that person like they were crazy.

That's how I feel about Basquiat and Warhol. Total garbage,
 
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Well, art existed before words, so it is not surprising that words are not adaquate to define it in a nice neat objective manner. And it is difficult to believe that you find it a complete waste of time since you were attracted to and are spending time on a thread titled "What is Fine Art".

But, exactly...why get into an argument over things that cannot be objectively put in a correctly labeled box, like art? Instead, one can offer one's personal experience and viewpoints -- which is why I can accept the viewpoints that term 'art' is meaningless, and that it is highly meaningful. Both viewpoints are valid.

Ian -- I was a student of Thomas's back before he left for Scotland. Looking back, I realized that he did not show his work to his classes. Except for the prohibition of images of kittens and babies, he was more interested on what the students could bring. I was both kitten and child-free at the time, but it would have been interesting to have challenged him on that.

I think the problem is not that we can't define art. It's that many people only think art is what they like and it isn't art if they don't like it. Or if it affects them emotionally, mentally or spiritually or not. As long as you explain art from the standpoint of the one creating it, you run into this problem.

As soon as you describe art from the standpoint of the individual viewer, then this problem goes away. It's art of the individual viewer believes it's art. If you're tapping your toe to the beat of the music, then it's art.
 

Vaughn

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I think the problem is not that we can't define art. ...
I do not think it is really a problem. :cool:
More like a human condition one should not take too Siriusly.
 

Sirius Glass

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I do not think it is really a problem. :cool:
More like a human condition one should not take too Siriusly.

thumbs up.jpg
 

KenS

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After my downsizing as a Registered Biological Photographer in the employ of Agriculture Canada's "Research Branch, (and some 50+years under the dark-cloth, my PhD-type daughter 'challenged' me to apply the nearby University and 'do' (or should I say earn` my BFA.)..mainly using photography (as opposed to painting/sculpture etc. I was somewhat surprised to find that they had 'closed' all but one 'wet darkroom available only to those students over half-way through their programme. Fortunately I have my own darkroom downstairs in my basement.
What I found more than somewhat difficult was to provide a "meaning' for all the images (each and every negative scanned (slightly enlarged and printed onto Asahi's OH projection film and printed as VDB prints had hung (actually just 'pinned)' on the wall. In all honesty I was 'more than surprised at my fellow class-mates response after the discussion about 'what and why each image was worthy of 'showing'. I was MORE than surprised at my fellow students' response.. a full 15 seconds of applause.
The Prof (bless her) asked if she might 'have a few (4 or 5) and I said 'help yourself.. but please allow me to sign them first... my class-mates then asked if they might each have one. I once again gave then the 'OK'

As a result, I came home 'empty-handed' but feeling more than"pretty pleased' with how well everything went down ...since I could re-make all the prints 'whenever' I felt the need.

Ken
 

TheFlyingCamera

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A good working but not definitive definition of "fine art" is art that does not have a practical purpose. It exists for its own sake, as opposed to say craft, which is objects that are created to have a purpose, but may exhibit exceptional degrees of aesthetic quality in addition to their practical purpose.
 

Don Heisz

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A good working but not definitive definition of "fine art" is art that does not have a practical purpose. It exists for its own sake, as opposed to say craft, which is objects that are created to have a purpose, but may exhibit exceptional degrees of aesthetic quality in addition to their practical purpose.

I said that about 100 pages ago. And several times since. And that is actually what "fine" means in this context- similar to "refined" - distilled from the practical application of the work.
 

TJones

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After my downsizing as a Registered Biological Photographer in the employ of Agriculture Canada's "Research Branch, (and some 50+years under the dark-cloth, my PhD-type daughter 'challenged' me to apply the nearby University and 'do' (or should I say earn` my BFA.)..mainly using photography (as opposed to painting/sculpture etc.

I’m not familiar with “PhD-type”; is that someone working on a PhD? That’s quite a commitment.
 
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Pieter12

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I said that about 100 pages ago. And several times since. And that is actually what "fine" means in this context- similar to "refined" - distilled from the practical application of the work.

Much of what is considered fine art photography is also documentary in nature, as well as addressing social issues. Same goes for painting and the performing arts.
 

Don Heisz

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Much of what is considered fine art photography is also documentary in nature, as well as addressing social issues. Same goes for painting and the performing arts.

And that implies what? Documentary photos are not characterized as fine art photography by their documentary nature but just as examples of art. If you use a cut diamond to cut glass, it doesn't stop being a diamond. Cutting glass isn't what made it a diamond - but being a diamond means it can cut glass.
 

Pieter12

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And that implies what? Documentary photos are not characterized as fine art photography by their documentary nature but just as examples of art. If you use a cut diamond to cut glass, it doesn't stop being a diamond. Cutting glass isn't what made it a diamond - but being a diamond means it can cut glass.

Just in response to post #816 and 817 that state that one definition of one art is that it serves no practical purpose or that is distilled from the practical application of the work. Many of the documentary photos that are considered fine art still have relevance to the issues that were documented.
 

Don Heisz

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Just in response to post #816 and 817 that state that one definition of one art is that it serves no practical purpose or that is distilled from the practical application of the work. Many of the documentary photos that are considered fine art still have relevance to the issues that were documented.

Definitions are ideal - they're either generalizations from word-use or derived conceptually, but still ideal. Things in reality are more complicated in terms of what they are. Things may be defined in multiple ways. Also, the definition of something does not limit its potential use. For example, a painting can be "fine art" and also used in an adult diaper advertisement.
 

Pieter12

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Definitions are ideal - they're either generalizations from word-use or derived conceptually, but still ideal. Things in reality are more complicated in terms of what they are. Things may be defined in multiple ways. Also, the definition of something does not limit its potential use. For example, a painting can be "fine art" and also used in an adult diaper advertisement.

Today, an adult diaper could be fine art.
 
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