Sunday, January 18, 2009

What is Art?

"The Art Instinct," it argues that the instinct to create art is part of the mating process. That is, we create art to impress potential mates. Now this fascinates me, because for a couple years now I've thought that the impulse to create work that garners critical praise and popularity is a means to get sex and love. "Do you like my painting/acting/writing/music? Wanna do it?" I can't even see myself being in a relationship with someone unless they liked my art.

Do you create art with conscious thought about attracting mates?

Jonah Lehrer reviewed Denis Dutton's new book over the philosophy of art. He writes that this book goes over different expline over the meaning of art and exploring the art instict. Overall it sounds like a good reading for philisophical value or if you're an art major. Pick up a copy.

"Dutton is an elegant writer, and his book should be admired for its attempt to close the gap between art and science. It really is time that art critics learn about the visual cortex, musicologists study the inner ear and evolutionary psychologists unpack Jane Austen. Unfortunately, like so many other aesthetic theories, Dutton's ideas are ultimately undone by what they can't explain. This is the irony of evolutionary aesthetics: Although it sets out to solve the mystery of art, to explain why people write poems and smear paint on canvases, it ends up affirming the mystery. The most exquisite stuff is what we can't explain. That's why we call it art."

Read the rest of the review here!

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