How Do You Define “Art”?

I love asking this question of people, so I am asking all of you: how do you define “art”?  I’m not looking for the Wikipedia entry or dictionary definition, but your personal, emotional, gut-reaction response.

If you’d like to take it further, and define the difference between good and bad art, or the merits of fine art verses commercial art (or you can apply the same to any field of the arts, if you’d like), I would love to hear your opinions!

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7 thoughts on “How Do You Define “Art”?

    • I agree with this, but would you then say (for example) that a detailed painting in a restaurant of let’s say a fat chef that kind of disappears into the background and has no response is of less artistic merit than photo stills from a snuff film which makes almost everyone recoil in disgust? It’s such an interesting line to try to draw, isn’t it?

      • I would definitely agree…disgust is a powerful emotion, and therefore still art. But the painting of the fat chef may have a smaller emotional audience. Perhaps someone had a grandfather who was a chef and the painting moved him deeply. I don’t assume that just because I don’t connect emotionally that it is not art.

      • That is a really great point! And there is also the argument, especially with a lot of modern and postmodern art, that apathy and a lack of emotional connection is a valid statement for today’s society,

      • I have a harder time with apathy, obviously. I think its just that my expectations for good art are to connect, and apathy blatantly screams a lack of connection, especially if that was the artist’s intent. Sounds like a cop out to me, lol. “You think my painting is boring? That’s exactly why I created it…brilliant, aren’t I?”

        And now we are back to where we started, with disgust. So maybe it’s valid afterall 😀

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