ARTH101: Discussion Topic 2, Defining Art


Do you agree with the definition for ‘art’ as it’s explained in the reading above?

I agree that the existence and nature of the art we see around us or that we create is tied to the human condition and that it is influenced by culture.

My instinctual definition of ‘art’ is that it is the natural expression of a person’s need to create something that hasn’t existed before, according to his or her experience and search for meaning.

Whether that need arises from a dream, from appreciating aesthetics, wanting to heal, answering the call from some unconscious stirrings, or imposing a purpose or goal onto the created
object/process, the expression of this need is the art form. Also, my experience with art, both
subjectively and objectively, is that this need to express oneself is usually initiated by an activating emotional trigger of some kind.


Hello raye-

I enjoyed your comments greatly and believe that it is correct that art is triggered and a response to an event, emotion. or vision of some kind. Perhaps, an expression of what is felt and needs to live outside of the artist with direction. When I finish a piece, I feel relieved to have it in front of. It is an accomplishment. I know others that are anxious when a piece is finished. So, being artistically driven is following an instinct. Should anyone else gain from said expression is an answer to the artist’s search for meaning from the piece created. I applaud your insight.

Thank you for posting,



Hello, my name is Elizabeth and I’ve been working with art almost all my life. Therefore, to me art is part of my life as it is breathing.
I agree with Leo Tolstoy that in order to define art, it is necessary to cease to consider it as a mean of pleasure and to consider it as one of the conditions
of human life.


Hello Elizabeth!

Like you, art has been and continues to be a life giving source. Golly, Tolstoy? OK. I understand. You have given me a deeper thought process to engage. The human condition is rather basic, yet the balance of life is another ideal.

Thank you for your post and please continue, I would enjoy talking with you on any level.

You have given me much to think on.


Art is an expression of emotion and thoughts of how we view the physical world. When I see a work of art, I look for its inward significance rather than its outward beauty.



You have that art is an emotion and thought, I think this translates to a moment of the artist, a movement from said that explores the socio-infrastructure. Not a conglomerate, rather an exaltation, if that makes sense. A moment seized from within, thus creational. The significance derives from, not beauty, but rather a thought of moment. We as viewers, are the “new” interpreters. It is the legacy; a forever. A new ideal to embrace what said artist wanted to express, therefore, the beauty belongs to each individual or not. Can not one find beauty within an ideal of ugliness? An interesting question. I believe so. It is the question that one posse. Is beauty an inward embarkment tor an ideal os what of acceptance?

I find your post heavy with thought and will enjoy further thoughts with you, if that fits.

Colleague K

and I thank you.



Art for me is very subjective - what I see and feel from a piece of art can be totally different from the next person because we connect with the experience of the art in different ways. A landscape of the sea front at Scarborough will mean something different to me than someone else who has either been there or not. It’s about capturing those feelings for something like a favourite place and then sharing it with others though it will be a different experience for them. Art is about connecting with the past, present and future in so much as it is one person’s interpretation that they wish to share with others in the present and in the future. Art is almost like a legacy that an artist leaves behind. It inspires others and develops further creativity in others. Art is also about our value of something whether it be the human form, a flower or a landscape and its about sharing our value of that thing with others so art is a constant reminder of beauty and beautiful ugliness that we should all value and never forget.


I believe that art is a way to express oneself, preserve beauty or even send a message. Art is as necessary for us human being as words are to literature or water is to plants. It is world-wide, outspread and unpretentious, It may be debated but is not the cause of the conflicts. One piece of art may be hated by one person but is liked by the other. Subjective or objective? I’d say both, I’m not selective.


I believe that art is a way for humans to connect with their spiritual side and bring them closer in touch with their emotions. While it does make you think it also can make you feel. Joy, hatred or any other emotion between those two.

How many times have you looked or listened to some work and been brought to tear? Or read a passage in a book that made you laugh out loud or cry, in a setting that you would not normally do so?


Unit 1:Topic 2

My definition of art is an expression of an emotion or point of view as it is or metaphorically in an abstract fashion.

I’ve studied aesthetics from Oxford books and thats the best definition I can find. The books were huge and didn’t give a final definition so that definition is where I ended up in the aesthetic field.


Good evening
I am responding to the prompt concerning a definition of art. I like the part of the definition that reminds us " Art is uniquely human" and tied to culture. I experience art all around me every day. It tunes the senses and tells or retell so important stories in our lives. I often think of a time when the written word was not so understood and picture or icons held our human history and also preserved it across generations.


I would agree with the quote by Joseph Brodsky. As I am someone who has been a poet for a long time, I have found that most of the poems I write stem from the questions I have about who I am and what I value as well as what is beautiful to me and the human condition. These topics are what I use to get my ideas for the poems I write (as well of course as the musical artistic expression.) Art allows me to express myself in ways that I could never normally do. Therefore I do agree with the definition given by Brodsky.


Do you agree with the definition for ‘art’ as it’s explained in the reading above? Why or why not? Can you add to the definition? Is your definition coming from a subjective or objective perspective?

I do agree very much with the original statement. I believe that art is an expressive outlet of our creativity and imagination. It is a visual or auditory journey of our culture, dreams, ideas and lives, mixed in with our emotions. I also think that art cannot be fitted into a mold of strictly following exact guidelines and disciplines. Artists should be allowed to bend the rules of art, if it makes the piece more involved and thought provoking, for the sake of the viewer and the life of the piece. I feel that art is the result of our inner emotions brought to life in some artistic form or another. Furthermore, the use of ones creative license, although it may go against some or all of the rules of design, can make a piece unique to the artist. I also think because of bending the rules of what art is meant to be it allows for new art ideas and art movements to arise. Maybe not always for the best, but it may still captivate and entertain certain art loving audiences. I suppose my thoughts seem a bit subjective, but after working with so many different artists over the years and learning their thoughts on what art is to each of them, I feel containing the definition of art to a specific mold or meaning would be unfair to all artists. Especially to those who think out side the box and bend the rules and elements.


I do not agree with the subjective definition of art as here proposed. I believe that art can only be accurately called art when the purpose of the creator is understood to be that which is outlined in my definition below. A person’s reaction to any work cannot transform the work into art. The piece either Is of is Not “art,” in any of its uncountable forms, in relation to the intention and essence of its creation.

To be as concise, and yet as all-encompassing as I can possibly be, I would define art as an expression of the soul that the maker attempts to share with the world in a creative way/a creative variation upon or Of that which exists, upon which the artist interacts.


Not to reply to my own comment lol, but to add to it, I would say that I am here defining art from a predominantly Objective standpoint, the subjective standpoints being I think clearly put forth by Karen, in that art can often provoke an emotional response from the observer as he reacts to the outpouring of another’s soul or creative work.


I would agree with the reading prompt 100 percent. But I do have a few words I’d like to add. This comes from a personal story.

One time I visited a Space museum, in Huntsville Alabama. Everywhere there were videos & photographs of busy scientists creating rocket ships. There was even a giant replica of an actual rocket ship which took actual people into outer space. Some people would walk away and tell their friends “I went to a science museum today!” but to me, it was an art museum just as well. As I walked around and saw the amazing things these people produced I kept thinking “this is an art. Oh my gosh they had to have been SO creative to come up with that.” On that note, I would define art in one word “creation.” Whether you’re creating a large mass of metal, to take people out of the earth with wires and cords, and electricity. Or simply a portrait of someone, or something, beautiful with a canvas & oil paints. It’s all an art. So, I would say art means something different to each person.


I agree with the definition of art. It is a very vague and broad definition, but that is because art can include a very broad set of things.


I see art as an expression of a particular element, or elements, of a persons’ experience and perception at any particular moment in time. Mostly, it expresses what it is to be human and the various levels and dimensions of the human condition. This can be good or bad, relate to triumph or defeat, sadness or happiness, understanding or confusion, control or freedom and so on. Art is so very diverse and doesn’t really know any boundaries either in time nor space. I think visual art can sometimes express something words cannot. Art brings people together but it can separate people also (political propaganda).


The conscious use of the imagination in the production of objects intended to be contemplated or appreciated as beautiful, as in the arrangement of forms, sounds, or words… Such activity in the visual or plastic arts: or Products of this activity; imaginative works considered as a group: art on display in the lobby. such as music, ballet, or literature A nonscientific branch of learning; . A skill that is attained by study, practice, or observation: the art of negotiation. Printing Illustrative material, especially in contrast to text. the creation of works of beauty or other special significance as an art movement. imaginative skill as applied to representations of the natural world or figments of the imagination. the products of man’s creative activities; works of art collectively, esp of the visual arts, sometimes also music, drama, dance, and literature excellence or aesthetic merit of conception or execution as exemplified by such works or therapy art (ərt; when stressed) v. Archaic

archaic (used with the pronoun thou) a singular form of the present tense (indicative mood) of be1
[Old English eart, part of bēon to be]


Art is a product, a commodity, that has a series of features that either attract you, repel you or leave you as indifferent. These features are often cnfused with quality - as if quality was a synonym for beauty or aesthetic appeal. A monte blanc pen and a bic pen are both pens - but the perceived value is in the bell and whistles. The sad thing is that culture tells you what features signal better design and artistry - leather seats, wood paneling - as if these were natural universal definitions of desire and beauty.