elizabeth priddy on sun 12 sep 99
interesting thread! But I majored in Philosophy in
college and managed to graduate in it without my head
"It's important, I think, for us all to acknowledge
that talking about Art is a lot like trying to nail
Jello to the wall with an icepick. Only terminal
stuffed shirts ever speak confidently about what Art
is and isn't."
Those stuffed shirts were my class mates. I started
out on a single art major and then added Philosophy
after an ethics class. Don't talk to philosophers
about art. It never works.
"But does that mean we should not talk about it at all,
except in the most nebulous, all-inclusive, and general
I meant it in the header, this type of philosophical
hard core is like Tylenol PM. But I for one, like
that kind of discussion. Stop reading if you get the
Apnea real hard.
In college, I took 'Philosophy of Art: Aesthetics', a
graduate level course in art and things related to the
qualities of art and its production.
If you could have only been there...every comment
made by these well educated, sincere, non-artist
philosophers was preceded with "well, I'm not an
artist and I really don't know anything about art...".
There is a presumption in non-artists that they are
not qualified to speak of art. Non-artists are most
people. If we as artists don't allow ourselves to
discuss it freely, then who will? The philosophers
came up with very interesting notions about what art
objects or ideas generated by artists
artifacts demonstrating principles of aesthetics
work embodying ideation through metaphor and images
images or noises emanated with purposeful intent
I will stop before you all get the Headache that
typically ensues when philosophers talk about art.
Going into that mode, just for a moment, has given it
to me...I managed to get my BA in Philosophy while
getting the other BA in "Multidisciplinary Studies:
art concentration". So I have seen this issue kicked
around in most of the formats it presents itself.
And I can earnestly caution you to give up before you start.Turn back...turn bac
What art is and the appropriate pursuit of it is
completely personal and there is no one way that
will apply. In fact, the variables involved for each
individual struggling with these thoughts are so great
in number, that even a glaze calculation program
would not be able to figure it. ;'}
If concrete suggestions, exercises, and Plans are
empoloyed by individuals, they make their own paths.
The more you are exposed, the more set the path
becomes. I am old and set in my ways with respect to
many of my notions about art. I still explore,
sometimes in order to truly understand something
before I reject it.
It is not a waste of time to work in a way not natural
to you for a while. If it is not working for you, it
will solidify your own philosophy, rather than
contaminating it. And then you will know and can say,
"I tried that and understand its merit, but it is not
appropriate for me; I might use it as a tool later."
Please do not run out to find a class on "Philosophy
of Art, Aesthetics", it will just make your head
explode with pent up frustration that you are not
allowed to hit the people taking this class in the
forehead with firebricks. It won't work on them and
they won't understand, either.
And I will not even talk about "Ethics"...
all right, since you pulled my arm... (big grin)
Someone on this group recently accused me privately
of giving away one of their tricks and that it was
unethical. I went physically to look at the work they
were talking about and was convinced that they were
being a little paranoid-with good reason, as some
unethical types have in fact ripped them off. But
what I described did not exist in their work. And I
had come to it by way of practical experience, not
some notion of theirs. I asked the sales worker if
they had EVER done what I had handed out as a trick,
and they indicated that they had never seen anything
like that in the past five years that they worked
there. I have only lived here for five years.
So it is virtually impossible for me to give away
'secrets' about something that I can never have seen. Therefore, the idea was i
accusation hurt me deeply, because I believe that if
everyone behaved ethically in their daily lives, we
would all be better off, and I will pass up great
opportunity to sleep well at night, and have.
Art secrets don't exist. Any idea worth having has
already been done. I don't say this lightly. My
background includes an intense study of art history,
from pre-history to Modern. It is rare that I see a
new idea. This doesn't bother me at all. It is the
implementation of these ideas and the individual
character added to the format in the form of unique
articles that make your work special and yours. But
if you get a little deluded and think that you
invented, say, "ribs", because yours are special and
different...you might need to settle down.
Maybe Aesthetics would be a good prerequisite for
being an artist. Doctors have to take medical ethics
classes. You can be an artist just by declaring that
it is so. There ought to be a way to verify it and
there is, the work you produce. And that is all,
because you can talk forever and if the work is crap,
the work is crap, and people will not respect your
declarations about your artistry. How's that for a
cold drink of water? Sometimes I am so harsh in my
thinking that I offend myself, even. But that critical
harshness with regard to my ideas and my life have made
me happy and productive, so I guess I'll stick to it
and leave the softer gentler thoughts for softer
gentler folk. ( I actually have a soft and delicate
side that typically only comes out in my painting,
maybe it's all subconscious anyway (bigger grin).)
Thanks for listening, and "You Go, Ray!"
I speak from sincerity and experience, not authority...
--== Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/ ==--
Share what you know. Learn what you don't.
Earl Brunner on mon 13 sep 99
elizabeth priddy wrote:
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> The philosophers
> came up with very interesting notions about what art
> objects or ideas generated by artists
> artifacts demonstrating principles of aesthetics
> work embodying ideation through metaphor and images
> images or noises emanated with purposeful intent
> Art secrets don't exist. Any idea worth having has
> already been done. I don't say this lightly. My
> background includes an intense study of art history,
> from pre-history to Modern. It is rare that I see a
> new idea. This doesn't bother me at all. It is the
> implementation of these ideas and the individual
> character added to the format in the form of unique
> articles that make your work special and yours. But
> if you get a little deluded and think that you
> invented, say, "ribs", because yours are special and
> different...you might need to settle down.
When I was working on my BFA there was a guy working on his doctorate in Philoso
of art. SHeeeeSH. The ideas he came up with! His doctoral thesis (and they *GAVE
to him) was something to the effect that art critics and philosophers could
interprete the true meaning and message that the artist was trying to say better
than the artist could. Talk about ivory towers here! I couldn't stand to be in
same room! He oozed--
On the art secret thing, basically I agree. Although there are unethical ways t
"rip" someone else off. And maybe it's not always a good aidea to copy someone
elses technique, style or idea in a small market.
John Rodgers on mon 13 sep 99
elizabeth priddy wrote:
> Please do not run out to find a class on "Philosophy
> of Art, Aesthetics", it will just make your head
> explode with pent up frustration that you are not
> allowed to hit the people taking this class in the
> forehead with firebricks. It won't work on them and
> they won't understand, either.
Elizabeth, I enjoyed your comments in this post very much. Normally, I don't bot
with the heavy discussions of philosophy that come across this list. I have come
a point in life and my own work where I simply do not concern myself about art
aesthetics, or the art vs. craft issue, especially where my own art is concerned
The work will speak for itself.
My own work is the result of a simple, deep, inner desire to work with my hands,
create something that lasts, something that brings pleasure for whatever reason
whomever posseses the object d'art. I have to do it for myself first, and if som
else likes it, great! I'm pretty basic in this regard. When I am dead and gone,
there will be untold monuments to myself in peoples homes and elsewhere. There
because I shared a part of myself with them through my work. And because they ch
my work for their own reasons, I will be remembered, maybe not by name, but
remembered just the same. It's a good feeling.
I have listened to many discuss philosopy and art, and I have often thought to
myself, "what a bunch of hot air". It always blows me away when someone who is
supposed to be "in the know" about art....especially if they are a
non-artist......tries to put an interpretation on some piece that I have made, o
tries to describe some statement I am supposed to be making with the work, or
lauches into an discussion of the aesthetics involved.
There is no way that I could ever convince them what it really means or the real
motivation behind it. I would be wasting my time.
And so it is that your comments and my own feelings coalesced and made me remem
something, at least where philosophy is concerned, about avoidance of attemptin
"Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time, and annoys the pig!"
In New Mexico
Jon Kirkendall on tue 14 sep 99
I also am a philosophy major (from WFU in your state!), but came to my
Philosophy of Art class without any art experience. Luckily, our text
book was made up of artists writing about their own experience of
creating, and I was so turned on I ended up with a double major
(philosophy/Italian Studies - it was the way I could take the most art
history classes and still graduate on time without switching entirely
over to art history and starting over).
I hear what you're saying though, and found most of my other philosophy
course work lacking because nobody was saying "what is your
experience of this?" Ivory towers abound.
Jonathan in DC