Art : Criticism And The Perception Of Art

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What is art? These three words have been at the heart of a debate that has lasted for thousands of years. From Plato and Aristotle to students and teachers in classrooms across the globe in 2017 the definition of art has been explored by millions, if not billions, of individuals. And yet, after centuries of debate and exploration, the concept of art is as ambiguous as ever. Throughout time many different schools of thought have attempted to define art and each has contributed an aspect to the commonly accepted characteristics of art. Formalism has defined that art exists in certain forms and these forms can be compared to one another, while expressionism dictates that art must come from a place of emotion in the artist and express emotion to the observer. Society and government have contributed ethical standards and measures to aid in the evaluation of aesthetic quality. Art takes a specific form. Over the course of history, the idea of formalism has evolved. It began with Plato’s Theory of Forms which stated that specific visual material like painting or sculpture was the extent of art. This assertion was countered by Aristotle’s idea of formalism that extended to ideas that were not physically tangible like literature and poetry. Time has continued to expand the scope of artistic creation and now creativity like theatre, music, photography, comics, poetry, debate, comedy, graphic design, and so much more have been added to the collective referred to as art.

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