A Personal Viewpoint

What is Art?

Aug 24

Written by:
Wednesday, August 24, 2005  RssIcon

As I have improved my own skills and developed more of a personal style, I have gradually come to have a personal definition of what art is - and what it is not. I am not trying to suggest that I have the "correct" view on the subject, but my opinion quite naturally affects the subjects I choose and the way in which I work.

Art is created when the internal forms and textures of the artist's experience of a subject are expressed through the forms and textures of the work. To be "good", to "succeed", it needs to communicate this experience to the viewer.

When viewing other artists' work, I ask myself;

  • Does it "connect" with me? By that I mean, does it communicate something to me that results in some emotional response - preferably positive. If it connects with enough people in a positive way, a consensus that it is “good” art will be formed.

  • Does the artist have a recognisable “body of work”? Is there some sort of consistency that indicates sincerity, integrity and skilful execution of an intention?

  • Does the artist’s statement (if any) about the work have meaning for me?

  • Do the artist’s biographical details (if available) help me to understand the work and therefore relate to it in a fresh way?

  • Is it art that I could "take home" with me? Would I want to?

With my own art, I pick a subject that resonates with my past experiences or dreams, and if the subject is a landscape, will choose one or more photographs to use as a resource. I normally choose photographs that connect in some way with the strong impressions and feelings that I want to express through the work.

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