Within the philosophy of the arts, the ontology of the object of art has for ages been arguable and undecided. When viewing a work of art, what precisely is being appreciated or critiqued?
Within the traditional delineation of art disciplines, certain criteria for appreciation have been assumed relevant. When we view a typical opera or sculpture, we appear to understand what makes these phenomena art and our appreciation is guided by such prescriptions.
But in a postmodern world, where delineations have been blurred, a sense of haphazardness has cluttered our neat demarcations and turned our clinical understanding of art on its head.
The only necessary condition for that which constitutes “art”, remains for it to be an object of expression, this being a result of creative intent.
That being said, the object of art can be anything, depending on the manner in which one views it. An object, such as a lawnmower, may be viewed purely pragmatically as an instrument with which to mow lawn; but it can also be viewed aesthetically as a found sculpture when exhibited in a gallery.
The same goes for actions. Found movement, such as mowing lawn, can have a profoundly different meaning when placed within an expressive context, such as giving society a close shave. Read more