AlexandrSolzenhitsyn In 1970, AlexandrSolzenhitsyn won the Nobel Prize in Literature “for the ethical force with which he has pursued the indispensable traditions of Russian literature.” Drafted into the Red Army in 1941 Was arrested for a personal letter that contained passages critical of Stalin and sentenced to eight years in a labor camp. Novels: The Gulag Archipelago and One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (best known). Critic of Communist totalitarianism in Russia. Expelled from S.U. in 1974. Died in 2008, age 89 Nobel Prize speech is one of the most famous ever given, due to its passion plea for the Arts, their power, and their necessity among human beings.
Is art created with the motivation of exposing corruption on a collective scale more meaningful than art that communicates to the individual? • Is art that is commissioned (ex: ceiling of the Sistine Chapel) still ‘art’?
Aesthetics and Knowing The Philosophy of Beauty
All Areas of Knowing? HistoryKnowerArtistic Creation While history combines all areas/ways of knowing to answer: How did we get to HERE from THERE? Art combines all ways/areas of knowing to create representations of the present, to pose questions about the future, to pose questions to the individual and collective knowledge, and to answer: Where are we headed? Why do we matter?
History Vs. Art • While History is often recorded by those in power, Art is often created by the marginalized. • How do History and Art use the WAYS of knowing differently? • Are we “hard wired” to appreciate Art? http://www.ted.com/talks/denis_dutton_a_darwinian_theory_of_beauty.html
Write a minute • For one minute, come up with as many different forms of artistic creation as you can: • Painting • Sculpture • Dance
What are some of the purposes of art? In other words, what work in meaning does art do? • To expose hypocrisy • To represent a system of values (religious or otherwise)
Questions to Ponder in this Unit • How does artistic creation serve to illuminate the human condition? • Why do we tear art apart? We analyze literature, critique artworks—can’t art just be there to enjoy? *Remember that Reuben Abel (Man is the Measure) argued that the Human Condition was Verstehen…to understand.
More Questions to Ponder • Does ART bring us closer to TRUTH? Collectively, individually, both? • If it does can we apply reason and logic to art? Are there syllogisms regarding what makes ART…ART?
Always keep in mind: What QUESTIONS is a piece of art asking us to consider? Don’t look for the answers…look for the questions! Edvard Munch “The Scream
But WHY do we create? • Why Man Creates(1968 Oscar Winning Short Film)
Metaphor • Socrates believed that Art served a purpose in regards to Truth, Belief, and Knowledge because it functions in metaphor, which is the closest representation of Truth we can find in symbol or language. Rene Magritte “This is Not a Pipe” 1929 Interestingly, Magritte painted a series in the 1930’s entitled The Human Condition
Some words… • Advant-Garde: new, different, progressive; a new way of experiencing the world. Can apply to any area of artistic creation. Deeply metaphoric. • Kitsch: Feel good art, often replicas of classic paintings or theater/dance that is brought back to the stage time and time again to appeal to mass audiences. • Who decides what “kitsch” is?
Art and Areas of Knowing • Mae Jemison: Teach Science and Art Together (21 mins) • When art leads to invention. Which came first, necessity then creativity, or creativity then necessity?
What are some other words we use to describe art or to “talk Aesthetics”? • Medium • Structure • Appeal
International Mindedness • The desire to create aesthetically pleasing objects and experiences exists in every culture ever studied. • WHY?
Beauty • Write a minute… • Come up with a list of personal requirements for you to consider art beautiful. What are your standards of beauty? • What do you believe are our societal standards for beauty? • Are there global standards for beauty?
Define • Good Art • Bad Art • What about Banksy’s Art? Is it Art or Act?
The Philosophers on Beauty and Art • Plato: Art weakens our ability to live rationally by focusing too heavily on emotion and not enough on Logic. • Aristotle: Art helps us cleanse ourselves of emotions that could potentially be hobbling us. (Catharsis). • Nietzsche: Regarded the significance of art to lie not in l’art pour l’art (art for the sake of art), but in the role that it might play in enabling us positively to revalue the world and the human experience.
Sarte: There is no genius other than that which is expressed in works of art. Existentialism is the road to humanism. • What does Pinker say? See text book.
Context and Artist Intent/Goal • Can you remove a piece of art from the artist and/or the time/place in which the art was created? Can/should art be able to stand on its own? • Example: can we fully understand or appreciate The Sun Also Rises without knowing Hemingway’s WWI history, his time spent in Spain, or the love that he lost with a woman he met there?
Art and Knowledge • Works of art contribute to our knowledge of the world and of other people. • Paradox of Fiction: Fiction is sometimes better able to communicate deep truths about the human condition than non-fiction. • Noam Chomsky: “We will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels rather than scientific psychology.” Agree/Disagree?
Too Much Knowledge • D.H. Lawrence: “Knowledge has killed the sun making it a ball of gas with spots.” • Does too much knowledge deplete our appreciation of beauty?
Art as Imitation“Life imitates art far more than art imitates life.”—Oscar Wilde • Claim: Art mimics reality. • Counterclaim: Is this true about a symphony? What part of reality does it imitate? • Art can subjtly influence the way we experience the worldempirical (experiential) knowledge is the closest to truth? • Great art helps us see the world with new eyes by drawing attention to previously unnoticed features of reality, even if it “reinterprets” reality. • Literature/poetry/song lyrics: “This is exactly how I feel.” Art can represent our “internal” reality.
Art as Communication • Claim: The goal of art is to is to communicate to the audience. • Counterclaim: Creativity is for self-fulfillment; if an audiences connects to it, that’s a perk. • Art can amplify man’s short time on this earth by enabling him to receive from another the whole range of someone else’s lifelong experiences with all their problems, colors, and flavors. Art recreates in flesh experiences that have been lived by other men, and enables people to absorb them as if they were their own.” Alexandr Solzhenitsyn
Art as Education • Moral Provocation • Propaganda • Empathizing with other people • Fighting/Encouraging nationalism, ethnocentrism, racism • Communicating the inside of another person’s experience to us, a great novel or play can move and inspire us in a way that purely factual descriptions cannot.
Are these artists? • A chef in a five star restaurant • A teacher • A wedding dress designer • An architect • A wine maker • A perfume maker
Judging Art: Intention of Artist • Intention of the artist • Evoking an aesthetic response • Is art an answer to a question/questions the artist is asking? • Does the artist intend to convey truth? • Does the artist have a responsibility to his or her audience?
Judging Art: Quality of the work • Technical Competence. What does this mean? • Kitsch? • Innovation • What is the motivation? Is it an informed stance? Does this matter?
Judging Art: Timelessness • Does a piece need to speak across generations and cultures? • Is the meaning of art static of fluid across time and culture? • Is art created or discovered? Michelangelo’s The Prisoners
Judging Art: Response of Audience • Art needs an audience to complete it. True or false? • How are liking art and aesthetic judgment different? Which is more important? • Are we all equal when it comes to judging art? • Can we use reason/logic to come up with a rational way for judging artistic value or talent? • Art connects us. http://www.upworthy.com/a-husband-took-these-photos-of-his-wife-and-captured-love-and-loss-beautifully?c=fea
The Canon • Where is this list? What do you think is on it?
The Value of Art • How should art be priced? • Should governments use taxpayer money to purchase art for museums? • Should governments provide stipends for artists (novelists, dancers, actors, etc)? • Why is some art so much more valuable than other art? • Original copies of novels sell for thousands. • BBC: Nazi Looted Art Found in Munich ($1 Billion!)
TOK Art Gallery • Write down these questions: • What do you see? • What do you feel? • What do you think? • Gut Reaction: do you like it or dislike it? • What do you assume/interpret? • What do you need to know? • What are the personal and shared perspectives? • What Ways/Areas of knowing are used? • What is one question being asked by this artwork? • How does this piece help us understand our perspective of the world? Answer these questions in reference to the following set of artistic endeavors.
1. Ai WeiWeiDropping a Han Dynasty Urn (1995)
3. Inukshuk—Inuit Sculpture
4. Frizzell. Wine Country. 2012.
5. Terracotta Warriors of the Emperor Qin. China.
6. Maud Lewis, Cat and Two Kittens, 1952
9. • Artemisia Gentileschi’s “Judith Slaying Holofernes”, 1620
10. Michelangelo. David. Italy. 1504
11. Tiles, arabesque pattern, Mosque of Cheykhoun. Egypt. 1877
13. Salvador Dali, Hallucinogenic Toreador, 1970
14. Yang FuhuaShanghai Red Square, 2009
15. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Piano Concerto No. 21 - Andante http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=df-eLzao63I 16. Bach, Toccata and Fugue in D minor, organ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipzR9bhei_o