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Definitions Of Art Essay

842 words - 4 pages

Webster’s College Dictionary gave many definitions of art. The first definition listed is the human ability to make things; creativity of man as distinguished from the world of nature. Another definition listed is creative work or its principles; a making or doing of things that display form, beauty, and unusual perception; art includes painting, sculpture, architecture, music, literature, drama, the dance, etc.
Alexander and Becker both state that art is socially defined. In other words, art is an abstract term whose definition may change from culture to culture, society to society, etc. Further, Becker states that art is defined by groups of people organized into art worlds.
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When we try to define it, we may find many anomalous cases, cases which meet some, but not all, of the criteria implied or expressed by the concept. In many instances, works have some, but not all of these attributes. So with this in mind, it is very difficult to give the term art a single definition because it may be given many in the context of a particular art piece. If a rock is an art form in an indigenous tribe it wouldn’t necessarily be one in our modern society. This also goes along with the idea that art is socially or culturally defined.
The components found in these definitions separate integrated professionals from the mavericks and naïve artists. The definitions once again are broad but would apply more to the integrated professional since they are the “accepted – or striving – artists who use current conventions, modifying them in acceptable ways. The components found in the first definition may also be applied to maverick artists since it states that it is the human ability to create things. You may apply these components to mavericks since they are on the fringes of the integrated professionals but their ideas are more innovative and they don’t stick to the conventionality of the integrated professional. The naïve artist is completely outside of any art world but you can still apply the first definition given because again it is very general and states that art is the human ability to create things. The naïve artist creates eccentric works that may include a...

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