What is Art?

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A presentation helping middle grades students and older to identify the personal, and collective, nature of defining Art.

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What is Art?

  1. 1. What is Art?
  2. 2. Let’s Play a Game. . . • Examine the following series of images • Decide if they are Art or not • Be prepared to defend your answer with full explanations (not just “good” or “bad”)
  3. 3. Is this Art? Why or why not?
  4. 4. Is this Art? Why or why not?
  5. 5. Is this Art? Why or why not?
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  30. 30. Popular Definitions of “Art” • “Art is not a thing; it is a way.” –Hubbard (writer) • “Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.” –Merton (writer) • "Art is either plagiarism or revolution.“ –Gaugin (painter) • "Art is the only way to run away without leaving home." – Tharp (choreographer) • "Art is a kind of illness.“ –Puccini (composer) • "Art is meant to disturb. Science reassures." –Braque (painter) • "Art is like soup. There will be some vegetables you don't like but as long as you get some soup down you it doesn't matter." -Wyllie (sculptor) • "Art is childish and childlike." -Hirst (visual artist) • "Art is a bang/blast." -Okamoto (abstract artist) • "Art is art. Everything else is everything else." -Reinhardt (visual artist)
  31. 31. Who is allowed to define Art? • Artists • People who buy art • Teachers • Me • You • Anyone Fountain’ by Marcel Duchamp Owned by the Tate Museum in London
  32. 32. Who determines the “worth” of an artwork? • The artist who made it • The artists who criticize it • The person who buys it • The viewer who sees it • Should the worth of an artwork only based on money? The Card Players Paul Cezanne Most expensive painting ever sold Sold for more than $250 million in 2011
  33. 33. Did You Win the Game? • All of the images are Art
  34. 34. What is your definition of Art?

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