Art: Man's search for beauty

On Art & Experience

Changes in art come about through changes in perception, through revelations. These are never purely intellectual realizations. They are far more complex than that. Modernism did not come out of one's mind, but came out through the help of all one's senses, out of one's whole being, mind, body, with whatever we call the soul thrown in the bargain. Truly original & novel ideas are not born out of concepts, like rabbits out of a hat, as the art world seems to have recently assumed, but out of a deep experience of time, one's own time, the past, the future & one's beliefs within that framework. Ideas should come out of experience, not the other way around.
Art Now

Everything is Art!

The surest way to destroy a concept is to expand it to mean everything. Over the last century, art has been the victim of such a practice. The new belief is that anything intended to be "art" is art. Is this circular? Of course it is. It is also the only possible definition left, since toilets, blank canvasses, fire engine sirens, and people urinating on stage have been accepted as art.
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Detecting Value Judgments in Paintings

Ayn Rand defines art as "the selective re-creation of reality based on an artist's metaphysical value-judgments." She states that metaphysical value-judgments are the answers to these types of questions: "Is the universe intelligible to man, or unintelligible and unknowable? Can man find happiness on earth, or is he doomed to frustration and despair? Does he have the power…to choose his goals and achieve them…or is he a helpless plaything of forces beyond his control? Is man, by nature, to be valued as good, or to be despised as evil?" The connection between these questions and painting is anything but self-evident as the authors of What Art Is admit "it is difficult to understand how [these] specific questions Rand poses would pertain to any art form but literature…"

Let's see if I can show you some paintings that answer those very questions.
Jean-Michel Basquiat