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Art 103 Intro to Visual Arts Professor Mendez What is Art?

by: Tory Walls

Art 103 Intro to Visual Arts Professor Mendez What is Art? Art 103

Marketplace > Shepherd University > Art > Art 103 > Art 103 Intro to Visual Arts Professor Mendez What is Art
Tory Walls

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About this Document

These notes cover "What is art?" including the notes missed on the New York trip. The notes have explanations and examples.
Intro to Visual Arts
Professor Mendez
Class Notes
Art, what, IS, ducham, Marcel Duchamp, visual, Art History, art103, mendez, livingwithart, living, with




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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Tory Walls on Sunday October 2, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Art 103 at Shepherd University taught by Professor Mendez in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 29 views. For similar materials see Intro to Visual Arts in Art at Shepherd University.


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Date Created: 10/02/16
What Is Art? Example 1 A man makes sculptures in his basement his whole life. Despite his efforts to get the word out, few of his friends knew of the sculptures or even liked them. When the man died his works got thrown away and he was soon forgotten. Are his works art? Yes, because he deemed them art. Explanation If a person claims that their piece is art, then it shall be. Anytime a person is intending on making a piece of art, the piece they make will be art. This can then be judged as good or bad art, but is still art regardless. Example 2 A high school janitor never really talks to people and goes home and paints. When he died his apartment was found filled with doodles everywhere and half finished novels. The landlord thought the pieces were art and should be hung in a gallery as such. He got them into a gallery. Are these pieces of art? Yes, because even though the artist didn’t intend it, someone deemed them art. Explanation If a person claims that someone else’s piece is art, then it shall be. Anytime a person believes something to be valued as art, the piece is art. This can then be judged as good or bad art, but is still art regardless. Example 3 A gallery is selling paintings for millions of dollars. People are raving over the pictures. Not long after, the gallery finds out that these were painted at the local zoo by Skippy the Chimpanzee. Are these pieces of art? Technically, because humans are the only species to create art, but if you view the handler as the artist then yes. Explanation If the artist is considered Skippy, then it can’t be art. Art is made by humans. If you view the artist to be the handler of Skippy, then the same rules apply as in example 2 and the works can be deemed art. Purposes of Art Generally, art is not something that is used everyday. Art stops being art when it gains a position in everyday life. Though art is not used everyday, it still has some purpose. Specifically, art can do three things.  Educate  Entertain  Evoke thought/ Inspire This being said, a chair is not art when being mass produces and used to sit on. When the chair is one of a kind and is set against the wall in a gallery, it causes you more thought and then becomes art. This is the same concept as Duchamp’s “The Fountain” in which he flipped a urinal sideways and signed it “R.Mutt 1917” and called it art. At that point, this work caused people look at it and argue “what is art” because it is widely believed that his piece isn’t art. This in itself proved that his work is rather effective because it evokes thought still to this day.


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