Art and it’s Obvious Subjectivity

In my Global class, we’re learning about the Renaissance.  I love to learn about it; it’s a fascinating topic.  But here’s what gets me: the art of the era.  I’m talking specifically about Leonardo da Vinci.  Yes, it’s very well done.  But let’s face it: there’s nothing particularly fantastic about the Mona Lisa.  Hell, when it comes to the Vitruvian Man, it wasn’t even anatomically correct.

All art is subjective – that’s one of the most basic rules of it.  That’s why we have massive debates going on around the online art community.  Here are some of the bigger questions, and arguments for and against them:

-Is anime art? 

For: Yes.  It’s drawing, and most of the time it shows the emotions of the artist just as much as, say, realism or cubism does.  It’s just a question of how well it’s done.  A lot of people say it isn’t art, simply because of it’s increasing popularity.

Against: No.  It’s childish cartoons that doesn’t require any real talent.

-Is photography art?

For: Yes.  There are just as many components to photography as there are to drawing or painting.  There’s composition, lighting, angle, and many other things to consider.  Also, if you’re using film, there’s the process of developing to consider.

Against: No.  It’s just aiming a camera and clicking a button.  It’s nowhere near as complicated as more traditional forms of art.

Is it easy to tell which side I support for both?  It should be.  I don’t know if anyone remembers it, but there was an instance where an artist chained up a starving dog in a gallery and called it art.  Now that, I am dead against.  Anything that involves harming a living thing is not art.  In some extreme circles, it could be performance art.  What amazes me is that the artists were surprised when the art patrons complained.  I mean, come on.  If you’re going to do something that controversial, don’t be freaking shocked when people are against it.  It’s to be expected.

Another thing in online art communities: people get freaked out when they get critiqued.  Now, this isn’t, obviously, on ConceptArt, because it’s a community for critique.  I’ve seen it mostly on deviantART.  They get showered with “OMG so cute!” comments, and they get spoiled.  Then they freak and say they’re being flamed when they get critique.  That kind of annoys me.  They’re posting their work on the Internet, where there is no censorship, and anyone can say what they want within reason.  Some people will be harsher than others.  It’s just another thing to be expected.