first. The product of art is a replication of what we feel and think put into
visual terms using our own symbols and means of communication. As a
practicing artist and teacher, I always take into account what I want to "say"
to my viewers. My task is to find appropriate symbols that are both meaningful
to them as well as me. I need to explore the vast variety of media to find
which one is appropriate to express my "meaning". Therefore, art is not just a
technique we should teach but we need to make our students aware that the
media is the means to the end. The beginning is the "idea". Then end is what I
said in my painting. Whether we like it is aesthetics.
Therefore, how do we judge beauty? We need to understand FIRST of all, what
the artist was trying to communicate and then we can have some basis whether
the art is successful or not. Beauty IS in the eye of the beholder. There is
no universal standard. When I first saw CObra art, I was appalled. It was
garish to me and I considered it a waste of a lot of paint. When I educated
myself about to the movement, I understood what the artists were trying to
"tell" me. Now strangely enough, I like it. I may not want to hang it in my
home, but it "talks" to me.
The poet has the pen. The actor has the stage. We have the canvas or whatever.
.. Art is communicative just the same as their venues. If there is a a work
of art of a still-life of flowers, the artist told us about it in his/her
visual language. I may not like it. To the artist, it is beauty. To me, it
is not communicating according to my perception of what a floral still-life
should be. Do I have the right to call it ugly? A lot of our perceptions of
beauty are based on classical standards ...the Greeks searched for the
perfection of beauty. But that is only ONE standard not THE standard.
No doubt, we have a toughie here. We will battle this 'till the cows come home
and still be back to where we began. But...it is fun, no?