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ERIC Number: EJ781822
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1063-2913
Modernism, Postmodernism, or Neither? A Fresh Look at "Fine Art"
Kamhi, Michelle Marder
Arts Education Policy Review, v107 n5 p31-38 May-Jun 2006
Numerous incidents have been reported in recent years wherein a work of art is mistaken as trash. The question is, how have people reached the point in the civilized world where a purported work of art cannot be distinguished from a pile of rubbish or a grid of condensation pipes? The answer to that question lies in the basic assumption of nearly everyone in today's art world, from philosophers of art to critics to would-be artists to teachers of art. In their view, art cannot be defined. Virtually anything is accepted as art if a reputed artist presents it as such. Many would-be artists eager to make a name for themselves on the "cutting edge" keep "pushing the envelope" of what is accepted, to borrow two of the cliches employed by critics nowadays. Yet, ordinary people still adhere to a traditional view of art. Are they simply behind the times and in need of reeducation? Or might the traditional concept of art be worth preserving? Is it perhaps the presumed experts who should rethink their basic premises? In this article, the author aims to shed light on these questions. The three views that the author outlines in this article--modernist, postmodernist, and Ayn Rand's alternative--differ radically in the answers they give to four key questions regarding the nature of art: (1) What is the relationship between art and life?; (2) What is the role of subject matter and content versus form and style in a work of visual art?; (3) What part does emotion play in the creation of, and response to, a work of art?; and (4) What is the nature of the artist's role in the creative process? The most important of these questions, closely connected to the other three, is, What is the relationship between art and life--between works of art and reality itself? (Contains 35 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A