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Thread: Art?

  1. #1
    Son of LO
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    Art?

    I saw that Damien Hirst released some more of his work recently. One of them is a dead sheep carcass, sitting in a toilet with a hypodermic syringe stuck in its leg.

    I couldn't find a pic of it on the net so no link to it sorry (maybe someone could help me out here)

    His work has often raised eyebrows among critics, and this one is no different, many passing it off as a publicity stunt.

    When i saw his latest works, i have to say i thought they looked quite cool, much better than any of the shyte Tracey Emin tries to pass off as "art"

    Also, even though a dead sheep is hardly the most beautiful thing in the world, i still find it less offensive than the ghastly fourth plinth in Trafalgar square. I have a friend who often works in London and he says that he can't bring himself to look at it whenever he drives up there.

    I was wondering if people agreed with me, are pickled sheep interesting?

    Ciao

    Stonehambey


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  3. #2
    Son of LO The_Giant_Mantis's Avatar
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    I think conceptual art is great because it represents an acceptance of something which has always been true, that art is nothing but that which is considered to be art.

    If Tracy Emin can get her hillarious rubbish put in an art gallery and make a few critics wet themselves with glee, then what she produces must be art. It's been recognised as such. It doesn't need to be beautiful, it doesn't need to require any skill to produce, it doesn't even need to have any deep meaning or significance, it doesn't need to make you think or provoke any emotional reaction. All it needs is for someone, somewhere to give it the stamp of approval and say that it is art.

    That's always been the case.. Anyone who talks about the debasement of art has probably forgotten that what they consider art was likely once considered a debasement of something else.

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    I usually find contemporary art to be at least as interesting as the traditional works because I am fascinated by the way that contemporary art usually has less to do with what is on the canvas or the plinth and more to do with what is inside our own heads. The Mona Lisa is beautiful, no doubt about that, but I must admit I find this most famous painting (‘Da Vinci Code’ aside) less fascinating and thought-inspiring than a dead sheep on a toilet. The Mona Lisa is not nearly as challenging for me to comprehend as is the facing of my own imperfection and inevitable mortality.

    Other artists that spring to mind as fascinating for their ability to challenge intellectually and morally are Gunther von Hagens and Marco Evaristti. Von Hagens is the German doctor creating art from preserved human corpses (for those not faint of heart, examples of his art can be found here), and Evaristti became instantly famous in Denmark when he presented his artistic installation ‘HELENA’ on a Danish museum; the artwork consisted of a number of blenders with live goldfish in them and a sign telling viewers that they could switch on the blenders if they wanted to, instantly pulping the goldfish alive.

    According to the artist the purpose of the piece was to defy the concept of what is right and what is wrong, a continuation of his project on the theme of beauty’s transience - the fine line between existence and nothingness. At least one visitor took advantage of the opportunity and liquefied a goldfish, causing massive drama in the Danish media, the arrest of the artist for animal cruelty, several daring goldfish rescues, and eventually the irreparable destruction of ‘HELENA’ by unknown culprits. In my opinion, while the installation itself was very thought-inspiring, the public’s reaction was the true piece of art.

    I believe the same is true for the sculpture you mention, ‘Alison Lapper Pregnant’, which is currently displayed on Trafalgar Square. Unfortunately I haven’t seen this piece of art in real life, but I’ve seen enough photos to realise the beauty of it. I wish we had a sculpture like that on display here in Copenhagen. I really can’t understand why you’d find the sculpture ghastly at all, and I would very much like to know what it is about the piece that repulses you so. The sculpture itself appears to be a masterpiece of clean lines and life-like resemblance, and the human body in all its glory is by far the greatest masterpiece I’ve ever set my eyes on, so I’m thinking that whatever it is about the sculpture than you find disgusting, it isn’t the sculpture itself at all…

    Definitely a thought-provoking piece of art, that’s for sure. Absolutely beautiful.

    ~Grephaun.
    "Girls are nice and cuddly on the outside, and freaky on the inside." ~ Lost Nemesis.


  5. #4
    ISIS Secret Agent Squishy mpdscott's Avatar
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    Art, just like music, is a very personal thing, it is so subjective that no two people can ever truely agree on what qualities are necessary for something to be defined as good art. It really is a case of "one man's trash is another man's treasure". While there are facets of art (and music) that are requisite, it's the application of those things that causes the discord amongst "critics". I suppose that I am a little old fashioned in my tastes and definitions of art. This doesn't mean that I like works by all the classical artists, but neither does it mean that I can't appreciate more contemporary works. An example I think is in order. I truely love Michelangelo's David, Creation of Man, as well as Monet and his beautiful works; I can also appreciate the beauty of von Hagen's work, there is nothing in this world more majestic and beautiful than the human body. I suppose that you could argue that von Hagen isn't actually creating anything, and merely preserving, but the same could be said for any landscape painting.
    If I had to specify a single thing that defines art for me, it would be the same thing that I use to define music. If a person has worked with skill (great or small) and put their passion into it, then it is art. I may not like what I see, but if it has great meaning to the creator, then it is worthy of being called art. Even unlicenced public art (ie graffiti) can be extraordinarly beautiful, as long as it isn't just tagging, with artists showing incredible skill and control of a spraycan to create a piece.
    Now to confuse you. In Australia there is a system for artists to receive government funding to bring their vision to reality, and while it is an admirable thing, it has been exploited by people who claim to be artists. One man's dream was to paint 50 elm trees blue. It would have cost the government something like $100,000 to fund his "dream", which is significantly more than the paint required for the job. How was this art? As far as I'm concerned it wasn't, and why? Quite simply, it would have required more skill to con the money out of the government than it would have to "create" the so-called art (he was rejected after it became public knowledge).
    A more recent piece to be completed, which I classify as art, is a piece that consists of something liek 250 lenghts of narrow plastic piping, predominately red in color, and ranging from lengths of 3 meters to 5 meters, "planted" in the ground so that they could freely move with the wind. Apparently, at it's most basic, this piece symbolises fire at night, and (interestingly) grass during the day, as well as numerous other things, depending on your view of it. I can understand why some people do not classify this as art, it is "just a whole heap of pipes", but it was something with a significant meaning to the artist, and therefore, in my opinion, art.
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    Son of LO
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grephaun
    I really can’t understand why you’d find the sculpture ghastly at all, and I would very much like to know what it is about the piece that repulses you so.
    Now i've got to be careful what i type here...

    There is a reason models look the way they do, it's because they are pleasing to the eye.

    I don't particularly want to look at a person with phocomelia naked any more than i would want to look at an obese person naked, regardless of how politically correct it is.

    Maybe the statue is supposed to question such an opinion, and maybe i'm supposed to look inside myself and question my definitions of "perfection", i don't know. All i know is that on a purely physical level, i find the statue repulsive.

    The reason i find the sheep thing cool is that it is so detached from anything my sub-conscious would view as a "potential mate", that i am able to look at it (i think) in a different way

    Of course others will disagree

    Ciao

    Stonehambey

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    I once had a college professor tell me that art & music "stored emotion" for others to experience. Meaning, that a sad peice of music could make you sad, etc.

    Looking at the reaction that two different people had to the Fourth Plinth, I can see that he wasn't entirely true. It appears that a peice of art can provoke very different feelings in different people.

    So here's another question... what's the purpose of art? To make you feel? To make you think? Why do we do it, pay for it... etc.
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    While I'm all for subjectivity, I think the fourth plinth could quite easily be seen as insulting. Not through it's image itself, but the fact that you are not really given any choice over viewing it or not. If you want to see conceptual/modern art and the like you go to an art gallery, and if you don't you stay away from art galleries. Some people may feel insulted by the fact that this piece of art is shoved in their faces, on their routes to work, etc, and I certainly would - I can imagine the response if I erected a giant swastika in the middle of a city square somewhere, and while I'm aware of the extremity of that example, it's the same base principle - people are being given no choice over whether they see it or not.

    LoC
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    With that logic... Wouldn't even the Eiffel Tower be... offensive to some? Wouldn't we have to remove all public art? Isn't that a far worse fate then seeing something offensive?
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  10. #9
    Son of LO The_Giant_Mantis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lordofchange
    While I'm all for subjectivity, I think the fourth plinth could quite easily be seen as insulting. Not through it's image itself, but the fact that you are not really given any choice over viewing it or not. If you want to see conceptual/modern art and the like you go to an art gallery, and if you don't you stay away from art galleries. Some people may feel insulted by the fact that this piece of art is shoved in their faces, on their routes to work, etc, and I certainly would - I can imagine the response if I erected a giant swastika in the middle of a city square somewhere, and while I'm aware of the extremity of that example, it's the same base principle - people are being given no choice over whether they see it or not.
    But the same goes for Nelson's Column itself not to mention Saint Paul's Cathedral, and just about every other landmark and touristy location in London.

    They're all covered in 'art.' I have no choice whether I see it or not.

    If we're going to follow that logic, you're going to have to tear down every building in the city, because someone's going to find them aesthetically unpleasing.

    I take Stonehambey's point about models, but to be frank, I find a lot of 'models' repulsively ugly.. Does that mean every magazine they've been on the cover of should be shredded so as not to offend my ethical sensibilities?
    Last edited by The_Giant_Mantis; June 24th, 2006 at 21:13.

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    Pure Venom. Lordofchange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Giant_Mantis
    But the same goes for Nelson's Column itself not to mention Saint Paul's Cathedral, and just about every other landmark and touristy location in London.

    They're all covered in 'art.' I have no choice whether I see it or not.

    If we're going to follow that logic, you're going to have to tear down every building in the city, because someone's going to find them aesthetically unpleasing.

    I take Stonehambey's point about models, but to be frank, I find a lot of 'models' repulsively ugly.. Does that mean every magazine they've been on the cover of should be shredded so as not to offend my ethical sensibilities?
    Heh, fair point. I retract my statement, but I suppose it's there you go into the realms of "publicly acceptable" art. I.e. some people may not want their kids to see nudity, etc. Meh, I dunno. I don't have to worry about it, as I haven't been to London in years, but I'm sure i appeals to some.

    LoC
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