Embracing the evolution of art
By Ayra Fouad, Staff Writer
Societal biases are a subconscious force over which we, as individuals, have minimal control — yet they have a great influence on our opinions. We are so heavily affected by our environment, that often times, we forget to detach ourselves from our embedded biases in order to fully experience the world.
When it comes to defining ideas, like art, everyone has a different perspective on it. Even within a single society, there are different definitions of art — with some only accepting certain styles, with others only accepting certain mediums. Oftentimes, that is how our society works — accepting things which are often used simply for aesthetics which, therefore, don’t serve any practical purpose, only acknowledging works displayed in big museums signed by big artists.
In studying the human condition, one of the most crucial milestones in our lineage was the beginning of art — things such as the cave paintings and pottery. Cave paintings, however, were never made for the purpose of art as far as we know. Instead, they were most likely created by priests, or shamans, inscribing prayers or drawing out their visions. They served a very different purpose for the people and the culture at the time. In cases like this, while the intended purpose may have been practical or spiritual for some, the people who see it as art today are just as valid.
Mediums such as sculptures and paintings are often easier to accept as forms of art for a vast majority of people. Things like buildings and bridges are less-recognized forms of art due to their more technical nature — as if there are too many grids and formulas involved in the process for them to be considered art. Things such as car models and robots are even less-recognized as being works of art. Mimicking a human being in art through a painting or a carving is considered art by the masses, but trying to build a being which mimics human behaviour is seldom recognized.
To define art, we must broaden our perspectives to understand those of others. While some things may look like art to us, perhaps others will perceive it differently. Even within our society, for example, there are mediums, such as graffiti, which are considered a nuisance by some and beautiful works of art by others.
The saying that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is perhaps the best way to define art, as it reinforces the idea that art is valid in all of its forms, as it appeals to every individual. It is simply something created by someone which invokes an emotional response. While someone’s work may not look like art to you, it may be a masterpiece to someone else.