RetouchPRO

Go Back   RetouchPRO > Community > Salon
Register Blogs FAQ Site Nav Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Salon Just hanging around...
(Social area, where non-retouching talk is encouraged)

But is it "Art"? (part II)

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-09-2003, 04:11 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Janitor
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,068
Blog Entries: 21
But is it "Art"? (part II)

A recent conversation with a friend got me thinking about this subject again. I knew there was an excellent thread on this subject here already so I looked it up. Though it's still one of my favorite threads, it was concentrating on the commercial aspects (it's over in the Work/Jobs forum if you're interested).

I find myself now thinking in more absolute terms. To me art is a form of communication. It differs, however, from the mundane everyday communications of facts, opinions, reminders, entertainments, etc., in that it is a communication between souls.

Anything can be art, but not everything is. In fact, most things aren't. Art is a dialog, so half of it is in the creation and half in the appreciation. If we find ourselves unmoved by alleged art, it is perhaps the failure of the artist, but we are equally at risk of failure.

I find this question more important today than ever, as we are awash in "craft". In my view, craft is empty art. Like bad poetry, it can be flawlessly contructed, yet mean nothing, except to its creator.

I think this last part is the most important "except to its creator". We all love our creations, but that doesn't make them successful. Art is a form of communication, so what is being communicated? To often today I'm afraid it communicates "I needed the paycheck" or "I had some time to kill". Much of what I see in the world today is more akin to assembling a jigsaw puzzle than any real effort at thoughtful communication.

But, of course, we the viewer are equally to blame. With no basis for comparison we cannot develop a critical eye. And we are notoriously lazy viewers in the 21st century. The old cliche "if a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear, does it make a noise?" could just as easily read "if an artist creates yet no one is around that can appreciate it, is it art?"

So we have lazy viewers applauding jigsaw assemblers, while genuine artists toil in a vacuum, and critical viewers suffer from visual starvation.

So ask yourself the next time you create "what is my soul trying to say?"

And the next time you view a creation ask "can I hear their soul?"
Reply With Quote top
  #2  
Old 06-09-2003, 04:46 AM
chris h's Avatar
chris h chris h is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Northern UK
Posts: 991
I think more angst and hot air is created by viewers and critics of 'art' than is/was ever expended by its creators.
Reply With Quote top
  #3  
Old 06-09-2003, 04:58 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Janitor
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,068
Blog Entries: 21
Possibly true. Art is, by definition, anti-intellectual. But that doesn't stop them from trying.

If a tree falls in the forest and is broadcast on nationwide TV, does it make a million sounds?

My own view of critics is that they serve as interpreters (and I know I've badly needed an artistic interpreter more than once). But, as the ratio of artist to critics is a very large one, and to successfully differentiate themselves from the competition the critis must be...different...at some point they are going to start contradicting and missing the point.

Which is why I'm very critical of the critics I allow into my head
Reply With Quote top
  #4  
Old 06-09-2003, 06:18 AM
G. Couch's Avatar
G. Couch G. Couch is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 951
Wow Doug...you really must have gotten into some strong coffee for a Monday morning! We could spend all day debating some of these ideas...I'll write a few comments now and think about this topic while at work today. (if I mess something up, can I tell my boss that is was because "I was pondering the place art has in society? )

I like the idea that art "is a communication between souls"... That's one of the more elegant definitions of art that I have seen! Of course, not all souls are included...some just can't be communicated to through anything more complex than a sitcom.

One other comment you made jumped out at me - "We all love our creations, but that doesn't make them successful." ...not sure that "love" thing holds true for most artists. Most of the time an image is created and even if it's a wonderful success, it's quickly forgotten and it's on to the next image. Most artists look back at work they did from just a few years back and cringe...it might be wonderful to others but most good artists are in such a constant state of transformation in regards to their work, that they do not really have time to sit back and "love" their work. The ones that do, often fall into formula and every image they create ends up looking like the same thing for years on end...which generally gets pretty stagnant and boring!
Reply With Quote top
  #5  
Old 06-09-2003, 06:43 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Janitor
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,068
Blog Entries: 21
While in school we were given the assignment of making a collage of everyday items that represented ourselves. The final work was to be a color Xerox. I worked quite hard on mine, and was very proud of it. We all brought in our Xeroxes, and the instructor told us to take solvent and smear our collage into "art". I couldn't do it, I liked mine too much and had only made one copy. I told the instructor so, and was made an object lesson for the rest of the class in holding our work too "precious".

I still have the unsmeared Xerox collage, by the way

"Kill your darlings" - William Faulkner
Reply With Quote top
  #6  
Old 06-09-2003, 07:53 AM
chris h's Avatar
chris h chris h is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Northern UK
Posts: 991
A byline in the arts section of my paper a few days ago was..


"Why is the output of our art schools drawn to contemporary Art?"


The answer being of course that no technical ability is required !!
Reply With Quote top
  #7  
Old 06-09-2003, 09:06 AM
tyeise's Avatar
tyeise tyeise is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 163
Quote:
Originally posted by Doug Nelson
Art is, by definition, anti-intellectual.
I must admit to being puzzled? Why should art be anti-intellectual? Sometimes taking time to study and understand certain art pieces can make us appreciate art. What definition of "art" are you using?

Tyeise
Reply With Quote top
  #8  
Old 06-09-2003, 10:00 AM
LactoBeeZor's Avatar
LactoBeeZor LactoBeeZor is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 93
Whooo people. Are you guys "Experenced", and those that are understand. Its a Jimmy Hendrix thing I guess.

I agree and disagree with each of you. Great conversation. Wish we could do this in real time.

I have been satisifed with very little I have done in the way of art. But some of my restores I have been happy with. But most I just make do because the person likes my job. But I still find things I could have done better.

Doug - the 2 questions you asked in your first post - do you use these? Maybe that is why my "art" isn't as good as I would like....hum. But really the only time I do sence/feel my soul is while looking in the eyes of my wife. When human communication is not there. Maybe I need to get back in touch....HELP

This is a great and eye opening conversation.
Reply With Quote top
  #9  
Old 06-09-2003, 10:07 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Janitor
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,068
Blog Entries: 21
Appreciation of art can have intellectual aspects. Creating art can have intellectual aspects. But art itself exists in a sphere separate from intellect. In fact, it is contradictory to intellect. Intellect can dissect the components of art, perhaps even identify context, but the communication itself is non-rational.

Intellect can describe the little hairs on the back of your neck standing up, perhaps even define the process involved, but all the intellect in the world can't convey the experience itself. In fact, it can prevent the experience from happening.

I was defending my love for a particular musical piece to a friend of mine recently. I said "Do you remember the first time you visited the Grand Canyon? That feeling that grabs you for the first time you see the actual size of the thing? That's how that music makes me feel."

He didn't get it. But I think he will someday
Reply With Quote top
  #10  
Old 06-09-2003, 10:17 AM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
Janitor
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,068
Blog Entries: 21
LB: I listen for whispers of soul all the time. Occasionally I actually hear it. I find as I grow older and experience more I can hear it more easily. But I'm also more sensitive to the silence.

I also use the other question, but not in the way you might expect. My art isn't retouching or restoration or even photography. But sometimes, when I'm in a certain mood, and have the proper measures of inspiration and caffiene, my soul sings when I write.

Sometimes
Reply With Quote top
Reply

  RetouchPRO > Community > Salon


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Photographers - you gotta love 'em, part 2 Benny Profane Classifieds 4 09-16-2007 11:45 PM
Color Photo to part color Saleem Akram Image Help 5 07-17-2007 03:46 AM
help to find a tutorial on making part of the picture jump out of the frame tigersnow63 Photo Retouching 3 10-16-2006 12:31 PM
Determining gender by hair part Ed_L History, Conservation, and Repair 13 10-22-2004 01:10 AM
Copying part of a channel derekfountain Photo Restoration 4 11-29-2002 09:38 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:05 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
Copyright © 2016 Doug Nelson. All Rights Reserved