ART - not just pretty pics

timsk

Legendary member
7,344 2,136
Mornin' Pat,
Are you setting yourself up as the great art critic Tim ?
Absolutely not. I'm merely trying to bring things to your attention that you don't appear to be aware of. Think of it as constructive input from an old online friend. ;)

The quality of art imho is in the eye/brain of the beholder.
This assumes that what one is looking at qualifies as art. However, the paint by numbers video you posted is at best occupational therapy - it has little or nothing to do with art.

One should avoid slavishly parroting the critics who are mainly stuck in the past with their own opinions. Most critics go further and try to foist their own opinions onto others.
Can you name the critic that I'm allegedly 'slavishly parroting'? Let me save you the bother, as I don't pay any attention to any art critics; so I'm not parroting anyone, slavishly or otherwise. Additionally, I wouldn't dream of foisting my own opinions onto others. All I'm doing is trying (in vain so it seems) to bring a modicum - a mere modicum - of understanding about a subject that you appear not to know a great deal about. I realise that's patronising, but may I remind you that it is you Pat who started this thread and gave it the title: 'ART - not just pretty pics'. If you'd entitled it 'NOT art - just pretty pics' - then I wouldn't have an issue.

Your definition of art appears to me to rest solely on the notion that it's in the eye of the beholder. End of. Well no Pat, there's a great deal more to it than that. I didn't spend five years of my life at art school to get an honours degree in the subject just to be told at the end of it that anything I go on to produce may or may not be art - let alone good art - based on the uninformed opinion of whether or not you and others like you give it the thumbs up. That's crazy! So Pat, at the very least, please tell me that something (a painting or sculpture) can be art - even great art - even if can't bare to look at it? Unless and until you can accept that your liking or disliking of something has absolutely no correlation or influence on whether or not something is (or isn't) art and that the two things are completely independent of one another - then I'll be forced to keep making this point until it finally sinks home.
Tim.
 

Pat494

Legendary member
14,496 1,541
Unless and until you can accept that your liking or disliking of something has absolutely no correlation or influence on whether or not something is (or isn't) art and that the two things are completely independent of one another
We can agree to disagree on your above point.
Surely everyone in a democracy is entitled to an opinion, even on art. Whether others agree or not is up to them and of only small consequence usually. However these days competition is so great for say places at an art school that some wanabee students, I guess, are failed on the practical. This is in a way is very good for the whole subject and amuses the general public. Maybe rejected by one school of art but lauded at another.

Of course it is entirely a different ball game when monetary value is introduced. What I would be prepared to pay for some art that has been produced may be vastly different from the Sotherby's auction price. Just a fact and unimportant. If I were an art dealer, naturally I would pay great attention to the piece's market value whatever it's merits. A good example is the " art " of JS Lowry.
 
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timsk

Legendary member
7,344 2,136
Unless and until you can accept that your liking or disliking of something has absolutely no correlation or influence on whether or not something is (or isn't) art and that the two things are completely independent of one another
We can agree to disagree on your above point. . .
No Pat, I'm afraid we can't.

Your position is intellectually indefensible. This is easily illustrated by finding a piece of art that you think is good but that you happen not to like. I'll give you an example: Francis Bacon. Brilliant painter, great artist - but I don't like his work and wouldn't want to own any even if I could afford to. Ditto for a lot of Picasso's work. So, if you find one picture - just one - then by definition you're agreeing with my very simple point, i.e. that art (be it good or bad) is independent of whether or not you like it. If you say you can't find a single example then I put it too you that either you haven't tried very hard or you have no way of determining whether or not what you're looking at is art.

If you're still struggling, try applying your 'logic' to other disciplines; maybe that will enable you to see the folly of your argument. For example, take the British Bake Off or MasterChef. In effect, you're saying that you know better than Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Marcus Wareing and Monica Galetti respectively and that there's no point in having pro' bakers, chefs, cooking schools and apprenticeships etc. as all that matters is what you (and all other uninformed people who don't bake or cook) think looks nice and tastes nice. Everyone else understands and accepts that the quality of a cake or plate of food is independent of what any one person thinks of it and, instead, is governed by the knowledge, skill and experience of the baker or chef who made it.

As I said in my last post, none of this would matter but for the fact that the thread title implies you know the difference between art and 'just pretty pics'. Clearly you don't. Either you need to accept the point I'm making - which isn't in any way contentious - OR ask the mods to change the thread title to reflect the fact that you know little about the topic and merely wish to impose your personal opinion about what's good or bad based on what you happen like or dislike. I suggest something along the lines of: 'NOT art - just pretty pics' or 'Pat's pretty pics thread'.
Tim.
 
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barjon

Legendary member
10,604 1,742
One of the joys of art is that it can be appreciated at various levels From the straightforwardly simple Pat perspective or from the much more complex Tim perspective and all points in between.

The dictionary definition - “the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power” - allows such a broad church.
 
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cantagril

Senior member
3,231 956
No Pat, I'm afraid we can't.

Your position is intellectually indefensible.
................

If you're still struggling, try applying your 'logic' to other disciplines; maybe that will enable you to see the folly of your argument. For example, take the British Bake Off or MasterChef. In effect, you're saying that you know better than Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Marcus Wareing and Monica Galetti respectively and that there's no point in having pro' bakers, chefs, cooking schools and apprenticeships etc. as all that matters is what you (and all other uninformed people who don't bake or cook) think looks nice and tastes nice. Everyone else understands and accepts that the quality of a cake or plate of food is independent of what any one person thinks of it and, instead, is governed by the knowledge, skill and experience of the baker or chef who made it.

Timsk, Timsk! If I didn't know better I'd think you'd been at my cache of brandy again. I think one has to be very wary of bandying phrases such as "intellectually indefensible" about on T2W, especially if you're going to then trot out such gems as your para above. Logic (double-edged sword and all that) has an amusing way of biting you on the furry buttocks.
Taking the issues step by muddy step:

1) No. In none of the universes I have visited is it true that "Everyone else understands and accepts that the quality of a cake or plate of food is independent of what any one person thinks of it." Taste is entirely subjective and one of the senses that with which our black box uses to acquire information. By luck (or rather, normal distribution...or maybe just Pareto...the meds are beginning to kick in now and it's all getting quite mellow) a substantial majority of us individuals share more or less the same perceptions of what we so naïvely term "reality". When it comes to taste this is no different - unfortunately for me I have belonged for some years to the minority for whom the pearls taste worse than the swine, so this is something I know about from personal experience. Anyway, the thing about taste is that it's happenstance that yours coincides with the appalling Paul Hollywood's and all that you are getting from electing him as your arbiter is that you have a higher probability of enjoying a cake if he does, especially if said cake is made and prepared using tried and tested techniques and ingredients. Forgive me for waxing axiomatic but one' man's meat truly is another man's poison. Remember your distant youth when your dearest Mama would intone "Eat your sprouts young Timsklet, for you will grow big and strong" at which - as any normal child - you would throw the sodding sprouts out of the window, sure in the knowledge that even the dog wouldn't go near them. And here you are now, pale and wan and posting on this hallowed forum, all the while battling the myriad ailments that the lack of sprouts has caused you and wondering who it is that buys their way through the frozen sprout mountain at your local supermarket.

2) ".... instead, is governed by the knowledge, skill and experience of the baker or chef who made it." Gordon Benetton!! You really shouldn't mix your drugs with alcohol. "..governed"???? as the youth say today: WTF?! By this reasoning, whatever Maître Fucnastie of the Georges V produces is exquisite not because he is highly-skilled and experienced but because he says so. Apply this to art and you get the starving Picasso and Van Gogh who paid their café bills with paintings - so, at the time of painting, they were right and the world was "wrong"??? Cobbleurs Monsieur! Tastes change, whether be they art or culinary and what is "good" would be shite earlier, or later, on. Put another way - Beauty is in the gob of the beholder.

3) "...as all that matters is what you (and all other uninformed people who don't bake or cook) think looks nice and tastes nice" So if I don't paint I can't appreciate?? If I don't cook, I can't nosh appreciatively?? Perleeease! Did you read this through before you posted Timsk? I worry about you. If you really think this then every critic in the world has to swap his quill for an apron and paint up a masterpiece to chuck in the oven.

Now, a little less conversation and a little more action - chez Cantagril it'll soon be time to bang in that dubious Thai swill from Sainsbury's in the oven and work out how to open that bottle of Venezuelan Chateau Vinaigre to wash it down with. Nectar, I tell you, Nectar.
 

trendie

Legendary member
6,533 1,126
My head hurts with all the words.
Could someone draw me a diagram?

Really difficult seeing two people I admire disagreeing so vociferously.
However, I think I would tend towards timsks thoughts.
Funnily enough, I thought of Francis Bacon as an example of art that isn't pretty, but has artistic merit.
As per barjon, there are many layers to art, and it's not just the art itself, but the context as well.
Van Goghs swirls are as much a reflection of his inner emotional turmoil, something that cannot be appreciated without a context of the artist or the sociiety from which it emerges.
Banksys art is as much about social comment than mere images.
I am not an art expert, nor a critic, well, not an trained one, maybe even a badly informed one, but I think the art is as much about what was the impetus to create the art, or the medium in which its expressed, or the artist themselves, as the art itself.
 
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cantagril

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My head hurts with all the words.
Could someone draw me a diagram?
As requested: a picture paints a thousand words....unless it's a Miro;)

Joan-Miro-Femme-dans-la-nuit.jpg

My failing memory might have got this one wrong but as I recall, he was the chap who entitled or drew on one of his works "Un petit dessin très cher" ...obviously being a tad short of the moolah at the time.
 

0007

Senior member
2,376 660
Yes – rather difficult to work out what's going on in Miro's brain (possibly something like what happens to the female brain when overloaded as explained in that very non-PC Harry Enfield video)

Here's a favourite hanging in my house – unfortunately it's only a print ......... perhaps if I was a better trader?

269743
 

cantagril

Senior member
3,231 956
Yes – rather difficult to work out what's going on in Miro's brain (possibly something like what happens to the female brain when overloaded as explained in that very non-PC Harry Enfield video)

Here's a favourite hanging in my house – unfortunately it's only a print ......... perhaps if I was a better trader?

View attachment 269743
Whilst it's quite gaudy (hoho) I'd hope that if you could afford to buy the original, that you wouldn't, instead wisely choosing to spend the money on the the worthwhile pursuits of women and alcohol....and possibly artwork where the women look at least vaguely like women.
 

0007

Senior member
2,376 660
Whilst it's quite gaudy (hoho) I'd hope that if you could afford to buy the original, that you wouldn't, instead wisely choosing to spend the money on the the worthwhile pursuits of women and alcohol....and possibly artwork where the women look at least vaguely like women.

reminds me ................ "I made millions as a trader and spent it nearly all on women and alcohol, the rest I squandered"
 
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cantagril

Senior member
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On Miro: I was amused to read recently that a minor mystery regarding some of Miro's works had been solved (by a non-artist, God Forbid!) regarding the strange squiggles that he 'd included on a number of his pieces including the one I posted just now. Turns out that they were just his name or signature represented by a pictogram. See horizontal blue scrawl in Femme de la nuit, above.
 
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0007

Senior member
2,376 660
On Miro: I was amused to read recently that a minor mystery regarding some of Miro's works had recently been solved (by a non-artist, God Forbid!) regarding the strange squiggles that he 'd included on a number of his pieces including the one I posted just now. Turns out that they were just his name or signature represented by a pictogram. See horizontal blue scrawl in Femme de la nuit, above.

I admit to knowing very little about art in the formal sense, have no skill and hence not undergone any sort of training or study, so I haven't a clue as to whether Miro is "proper art" or not. (Presumably those who pay a load of moolah think it is art).

Timsk- perhaps you could enlighten us. I'm not taking the P, - I would genuinely value comment from somebody who knows something about these things. (y)
 

timsk

Legendary member
7,344 2,136
Timsk, Timsk! If I didn't know better I'd think you'd been at my cache of brandy again. . .
Hi cant',
I apologise to you, Pat and everyone else here as it's clear from your post that I haven't explained myself at all well. Either that, or you're deliberately misinterpreting what I've written in a bid to wind me up. Which y'all are - big time - winding me up that is! Allow me to try a fresh approach to see if I can express myself better in a bid (please God) to get my very simple point across . . .

Take a painting - any painting - say the Miro posted by 0007, above. Let's suppose that you love it and Pat hates it. I accept 100% that you're both entitled to your views - each of which are as valid as the other - and every bit as valid as those of a professional artist or critic. I am absolutely not questioning that, not for one second. The point is this: how can your love of the painting or Pat's dislike of it be used to determine how good it is? Pat's whole premise is that something is good or bad based solely on whether or not he likes it. (Beauty is in the eye of the beholder etc.) So, given that he hates it - does this mean that it's empirically bad? If you subscribe to this view, are you really willing to accept it's no good based solely on Pat's judgement? A shit painting isn't great because Pat loves it, just as a great painting isn't shit because he hates it. Equally, a shit painting isn't shit because Pat dislikes it, just as a great painting isn't great because he loves it. Hopefully, that's crystal clear and you accept my point that the quality of any and every work of art ever made is completely independent and separate from the subjective judgement made by any one individual who looks at it - no matter who they are? Exactly the same principle applies to cakes and plates of food.
Tim.
 

timsk

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7,344 2,136
I admit to knowing very little about art in the formal sense, have no skill and hence not undergone any sort of training or study, so I haven't a clue as to whether Miro is "proper art" or not. (Presumably those who pay a load of moolah think it is art).

Timsk- perhaps you could enlighten us. I'm not taking the P, - I would genuinely value comment from somebody who knows something about these things. (y)
Hi 0007,
Yes, Miro is properly 'proper art'. Not because I say it is, but because it meets - or in his case exceeds - objective standards that make it so. Needless to say, like any artist, he had off days, so not all works are of equal merit. On the whole though he's brilliant and the world is a richer place because of his legacy. Even those who don't like his work (there are some!) wilI acknowledge that. I defy anyone to enter the Miro Foundation in Barcelona and exit the same wo/man you were when you went in. Your life will be changed, albeit only temporarily - for the better. Guaranteed! I can't recommend it highly enough. Ditto for Gaudi: art and architecture go hand in hand.
Tim.
 
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barjon

Legendary member
10,604 1,742
Tim,
do you agree with the dictionary definition or art that I posted earlier? Viz: “the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power”

If so, then creative skill has something of an objective standard. Imagination can be inferred (albeit not necessarily understood). The appreciation side, though, is primarily subjective, both in respect of beauty and/or emotion and “beauty in the eye of the beholder (ish)” In my opinion good art must satisfy both the creative AND appreciation elements.
 
 
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