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Art is Art is Art

“Does a work of [digital] art require the presence of an audience to exist as art?”

All of my artwork hangs in my room and does not leave. I typically do not share my artwork unless I am feeling particularly good about it, and even then I usually decide not to. Therefore does my art not exist as art? Even though I can clearly see it on the wall above my bed? I believe that art exists no matter what. It does not matter the audience or even lack there of. Even digital art will exist. After all isn’t it said that once you put something on the internet it stays there forever?

“Are published words [even on blogs or wikis] unreliable sources of the truth, seeing as we can’t speak face to face with the author to clarify questions or to confirm his/her authority on the subject?”

Well if you want to go this route, anything can be seen as untrue; it doesn’t matter what or who the source is. It has always been difficult to look at something and then interpret that something and then get shot down by someone else who interpreted something else about that something. The most obvious and common example of this is in any English class ever. You’ll read a book and then the teacher will tell you exactly what the author meant and how they meant it even though they’ve never come face to face with the author to actually ask them “Did you make your name your main character Anne because of the Faschist movement in the mid-twentieth century in Europe?” There is no way of actually knowing what someone meant unless you sit down with the author and directly ask them. This is something I’m going to have to deal with when I teach English. I have no doubt that my students will question my every explanation.

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5 thoughts on “Art is Art is Art

  1. You are so right about the general English class “here is the meaning” thing. I have to say that, even worse than assuming (and teaching your students) that there is only one interpretation, is that some instructors will tell you exactly what the meaning of a symbol will be on the test. It’s almost like a math class. “Here’s the answer. Memorize it.” This happened in all of my English courses — even AP — and it’s scary. The student is taught 1) that the many facets of literature only hold one interpretation and 2) you don’t even have to come up with an interpretation yourself. You can just get it from the teacher or Sparknote it.

  2. That’s awesome that you are going to be an English teacher! I also think it’s cool how you already have an understanding of different interpretations. Giving your future students the understanding of interpretation will be wonderful! The great thing about English class is being able to ponder and wonder what the author truly meant. Some things we read we will never know if there is a deeper meaning behind it. Even though that may be frustrating at times, I think it’s pretty cool!

  3. I completely agree that art can exist for arts own sake. Art doesn’t need an audience, and I know when I paint I do so for my own benefit not for the glory or for the benefit of displaying my art to an audience. I tend to not show off my art because I don’t need an audience to try to interpret what my art means. All that matters is that I know what it means and that is all that matters.

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