Saturday, October 24, 2009
It is easy to see that Art is a personal definition and that good Art is truly in the eye and ear of the beholder. I tend to bend toward the most inclusive definition -- perhaps the equivalent of the "universal field theory" of forces and gravity which Mr.Einstein tried to define. That which is true for all and true everywhere in the universe, were we there to witness it.
It could be a watercolor of the Orion Nebula but it is the real photo by Hubble telescope of the majestic astronomical assemblage. Few could argue that it is not art -- meets my criteria: "A presentation which is experienced through one or more of the senses and creates an emotional reaction as the result of it's intrigue or beauty". (I patiently await Art through the sense of smell!)
This is my working definition and includes presentations made by human or nature.
The trim at the top of these flying buttresses exists only as weight in the functional sense. The buttress holds the walls vertical on this church since the angular roof tends to push out on the walls causing an imbalance. These beautiful carvings in stone, to me, are an artful addition to the building even though they serve the function of weight. Thus art need not be "non-essential".
To quote a definition in the OED (Oxford English Dictionary): Art can be "The skillful production of the beautiful in visible forms" -- even if the universe produces it.
I will concede, though, that as music drifts through my mind and raises spirits it has no other purpose than to exist and flow through.
A definition which intrigued me though is as follows: "Art is a revelatory expression of a supportive nature that balances human tendency for logical criticism". Pretty much catches it if we could just watch and witness.