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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
does such a thing exist? how does high art differ from low art?
 
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derpyderpins

derpyderpins

Proud Normie
Sep 19, 2023
1,301
Interesting topic. I think it's important at the outset that high art and low art can exist without all low art being "bad." Maybe high art is more formal/proper, and low art could be more informal/crass.
 
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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
Interesting topic. I think it's important at the outset that high art and low art can exist without all low art being "bad." Maybe high art is more formal/proper, and low art could be more informal/crass.
well, generally high art seems more niche, while low art is broader and considered populist. i wonder if the two can intersect, or if low art can be considered high art. popular music, for instance, might be more formal or meticulously constructed (not to the degree of classical music, however). think jazz, for instance. few will rank Taylor Swift with Jonathan Swift, nor even Taylor Swift with Bob Dylan in terms of lyricism.
 
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EvisceratedJester

EvisceratedJester

|| What Else Could I Be But a Jester ||
Oct 21, 2023
1,947
(I'm not an artist by any means, just for reference so I might be wrong here)

No, I don't think it exists. It's just an arbitrary label and what is or isn't "high art" changes depending on culture and time-period.

1720535911807
 
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C

CC123

Arcanist
Mar 2, 2019
457
In the eye and/or ear of the beholder
 
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lacrimosa

lacrimosa

Student
Jul 1, 2024
114
When you listen to Aphex Twin's song #19, it's the same 15-17 seconds on loop/repeat... Yet, it's one of the most beautiful songs I've heard... Now, there are some subtle (very subtle) variations in it but for the most part, it's the same loop over and over again. Even though I have years of music production experience, I couldn't produce this if I tried....

My point is this, some of the most talented artists have made "bad art" or simple art on purpose, simply, because if you know the rules, you can break them to create something beautiful that doesn't need to be complex.

Take some of the most tasty food for example ... if you've ever travelled abroad, and I'm talking about street food. Simple, yet delicious...

So, art and even food can be totally subjective and the value is based on what one is willing to pay for it or the value one can assign to it based on how it makes them feel.
 
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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
When you listen to Aphex Twin's song #19, it's the same 15-17 seconds on loop/repeat... Yet, it's one of the most beautiful songs I've heard... Now, there are some subtle (very subtle) variations in it but for the most part, it's the same loop over and over again. Even though I have years of music production experience, I couldn't produce this if I tried....

My point is this, some of the most talented artists have made "bad art" or simple art on purpose, simply, because if you know the rules, you can break them to create something beautiful that doesn't need to be complex.

Take some of the most tasty food for example ... if you've ever travelled abroad, and I'm talking about street food. Simple, yet delicious...

So, art and even food can be totally subjective and the value is based on what one is willing to pay for it or the value one can assign to it based on how it makes them feel.
interesting. i have a friend who shares a similar belief. it also brings into question what is considered an art. cuisine, for instance, is certainly considered an artform to the chef. it's very hard to judge artforms comparatively, though. but that is inescapable. our tastes often intervene; some value minimalism and austerity in prose, while others value complexity and stylistic innovation. the same may be true of cuisine. inventiveness or novelty may be valued over taste, or the converse may be equally true (though i suspect that cuisine may often be viewed through the lens of serving a practical need more than anything).
 
hu3

hu3

Aloners / silence is tranquility
Jul 8, 2024
7
does such a thing exist? how does high art differ from low art?
Bad art is often used to refer to modern art. But modern art is just a reflection of our society and in calling it ugly we are denying our access to a better future.

Ofcourse also capitalism and uncreative assholes that thought they could do it too joined in and ruined everything. But fundamentally, in a way that too reflects our shallow society.
 
DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
Regarding High Art vs Low Art: my question to you is: Why do you care? Do you want the collective opinions of thousands of art historians, reviewers, judges, teachers, authors or auction house "experts" to define it for you?

Are you considering investing in art with the hope of making money?

Do you have a passion for certain kinds of art? Prints, drawings, sculpture? An emotionally pleasurable response combined with an intellectual interest or fascination with certain images? Is it about the history behind the creation of the image? The who, what, when, where, why?

Hi and low are for some people based on monetary value. For others it's age, style, presence in the major museums of the world or presence in books written by fans of a particular genre such a photo realism, or surrealism, or Pop.

Is a can of human feces worth now $300,000 high art? Is Marcel Duchamp's urinal high art? Is the Mona Lisa high art?

It depends on the social group it circulates in. That's not to say that art circulating in high society is better than anything "below" it. But the perception is high society has more refined art because it is being observed by people who supposedly have refined taste— but I can't say that's true. Look at some of the deplorable modern art found in some museums. The art exists as it was made, but our subjective projections place it in the high or low categories.

When Marcel Duchamp's urinal became defined as art everything changed. Even children's scribbles become art on the refrigerator.

check this out: https://www.bengoldscheider.com/blog/day-six-high-vs-low-art#:~:text=Already in the 1700's, writers,the works function and utility.
 
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sserafim

sserafim

they say it’s darkest of all before the dawn
Sep 13, 2023
8,628
High art: high culture. Refined and sophisticated. Has stood the test of time. Classic. Think European history, art, coffeehouses, architecture, sculptures, opera, literature, etc. Monet, Manet, Da Vinci, Klimt, Van Gogh, Renoir, Degas, etc

Low art: low culture. Mainstream media consumed by the masses. Pop music, brands, consumerism, entertainment (showbiz, sports, celebrity news and gossip), etc. Modern artists call anything art, but to me, art should be beautiful and aesthetically pleasing. Art is meant to be admired
 
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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
Regarding High Art vs Low Art: my question to you is: Why do you care? Do you want the collective opinions of thousands of art historians, reviewers, judges, teachers, authors or auction house "experts" to define it for you?

Are you considering investing in art with the hope of making money?

Do you have a passion for certain kinds of art? Prints, drawings, sculpture? An emotionally pleasurable response combined with an intellectual interest or fascination with certain images? Is it about the history behind the creation of the image? The who, what, when, where, why?

Hi and low are for some people based on monetary value. For others it's age, style, presence in the major museums of the world or presence in books written by fans of a particular genre such a photo realism, or surrealism, or Pop.

Is a can of human feces worth now $300,000 high art? Is Marcel Duchamp's urinal high art? Is the Mona Lisa high art?

It depends on the social group it circulates in. That's not to say that art circulating in high society is better than anything "below" it. But the perception is high society has more refined art because it is being observed by people who supposedly have refined taste— but I can't say that's true. Look at some of the deplorable modern art found in some museums. The art exists as it was made, but our subjective projections place it in the high or low categories.

When Marcel Duchamp's urinal became defined as art everything changed. Even children's scribbles become art on the refrigerator.

check this out: https://www.bengoldscheider.com/blog/day-six-high-vs-low-art#:~:text=Already in the 1700's, writers,the works function and utility.
i think that the method of consumption is also important in making this distinction. i think your post mainly refers to museum art, which i partially agree with. painting, for instance, produces a very temporary sense impression; the taste of art collectors and critics is, you are correct, a projection of a social construct, with respect to museum art. museum art is far more conceptual, and i would argue more self-contained in this sense. the experience of visiting an art gallery is informed the art i see, and consequently the experience takes precedence over the art, since independently they signify nothing to me.

i wonder if this is true of other mediums whose methods of consumption are longer lasting. museum art being the shortest, music and visual mediums like film being longer, and literature being the longest. Duchamp's urinal is considered genius by some, and others may (rightly) call such people snobs or dilettantes. the urinal is far more conceptual in nature; but something like Nigel Tomm's 'The Blah Story', while being highly conceptual in itself, is rightly viewed as holding no candle to any decent literature.

High art: high culture. Refined and sophisticated. Has stood the test of time. Classic. Think European history, art, coffeehouses, architecture, sculptures, opera, literature, etc. Monet, Manet, Da Vinci, Klimt, Van Gogh, Renoir, Degas, etc

Low art: low culture. Mainstream media consumed by the masses. Pop music, brands, consumerism, entertainment (showbiz, sports, celebrity news and gossip), etc. Modern artists call anything art, but to me, art should be beautiful and aesthetically pleasing. Art is meant to be admired

i wonder. by this definition, there is a great deal of low art that i consider very pleasing (aesthetically). i have a penchant for journalistic prose, so writers like Harry Pearson to me are writers i value quite highly, in spite of their marginal popularity and jejune subject matter. i don't even like sports, but i like his prose, which is enough for me. people like Ring Lardner, however, may be considered great writers now, even if he worked primarily as a sport journalist in his time. writers like Pynchon and Fariña, too, reference a lot of populist culture in their writings, yet are undeniably both great.
consider also that the passage of time is important in determining the value of a work. Zappa and Sinatra may take on a different tune one-hundred years from now. the test of time is the greatest criterion of value, and almost makes me believe in the just-world fallacy.
 
DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
i think that the method of consumption is also important in making this distinction. i think your post mainly refers to museum art, which i partially agree with. painting, for instance, produces a very temporary sense impression; the taste of art collectors and critics is, you are correct, a projection of a social construct, with respect to museum art. museum art is far more conceptual, and i would argue more self-contained in this sense. the experience of visiting an art gallery is informed the art i see, and consequently the experience takes precedence over the art, since independently they signify nothing to me.

i wonder if this is true of other mediums whose methods of consumption are longer lasting. museum art being the shortest, music and visual mediums like film being longer, and literature being the longest. Duchamp's urinal is considered genius by some, and others may (rightly) call such people snobs or dilettantes. the urinal is far more conceptual in nature; but something like Nigel Tomm's 'The Blah Story', while being highly conceptual in itself, is rightly viewed as holding no candle to any decent literature.



i wonder. by this definition, there is a great deal of low art that i consider very pleasing (aesthetically). i have a penchant for journalistic prose, so writers like Harry Pearson to me are writers i value quite highly, in spite of their marginal popularity and jejune subject matter. i don't even like sports, but i like his prose, which is enough for me. people like Ring Lardner, however, may be considered great writers now, even if he worked primarily as a sport journalist in his time. writers like Pynchon and Fariña, too, reference a lot of populist culture in their writings, yet are undeniably both great.
consider also that the passage of time is important in determining the value of a work. Zappa and Sinatra may take on a different tune one-hundred years from now. the test of time is the greatest criterion of value, and almost makes me believe in the just-world fallacy.
A matter of snobbery to me, but then I'm not an art critic.

Art is a compact way of conveying information. As such, it sits alongside language, genomes, etc., as something innate in a universe of sufficient complexity. I didn't create the Mona Lisa, but I can still appreciate it as art. In my opinion, art (beyond "found art" like the penguin mating pebbles arose when we started making tools. Though we recognize what BowerBirds build as art as well as choreography.
Art is a form of communication– sometimes a way of saying that something is mine, sometimes a way of emphasizing how much I value it or how much time I put into it…

Is art really not about survival but rather it's about transcendence, showing that we are more than just animals? Or does this extend beyond humans, Neanderthals, a human-cousin had bracelets and stuff (art)? It is a continuum, not an all or nothing thing.
 
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Dr Iron Arc

Dr Iron Arc

Into the Unknown
Feb 10, 2020
20,139
High art is everything you like and Low art is everything you don't like.
 
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DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
High art: high culture. Refined and sophisticated. Has stood the test of time. Classic. Think European history, art, coffeehouses, architecture, sculptures, opera, literature, etc. Monet, Manet, Da Vinci, Klimt, Van Gogh, Renoir, Degas, etc

Low art: low culture. Mainstream media consumed by the masses. Pop music, brands, consumerism, entertainment (showbiz, sports, celebrity news and gossip), etc. Modern artists call anything art, but to me, art should be beautiful and aesthetically pleasing. Art is meant to be admired
>> Refined and sophisticated.
Total crap can be sophisticated.

>> Has stood the test of time.
So it wasn't high art when it was made?

>> Classic. Think European history, art, coffeehouses, architecture, sculptures, opera, literature, etc. Monet, Manet, Da Vinci, Klimt, Van Gogh, Renoir, Degas, etc
Pretty ethnocentric.
 
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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
>> Has stood the test of time.
So it wasn't high art when it was made?
independent of what classification it is given by contemporaries. a lot of high art today shall be forgotten in years to come. certainly not an objective criterion, but the best we have towards striving to produce great works
 
_AllCatsAreGrey_

_AllCatsAreGrey_

(they/he)
Mar 4, 2024
284
As a recovering art student, I'd say that high art is that which has the "seal of approval" of art institutions, critics, curators, and collectors. High art is established within the artworld. This can be both modern or classical art.

Low art could be considered outsider art (or naive art) and it can be functional craft (including things like advertisements).

Many contemporary artists work on blending high and low art - think Andy Warhol.

These labels are subjective and honestly not that important, unless you're concerned with a particular kind of value - a cultural notion of "good/bad" and monetary value.
 
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derpyderpins

derpyderpins

Proud Normie
Sep 19, 2023
1,301
High art is everything you like and Low art is everything you don't like.
High art is everything you like that is not currently what's popular and therefore makes you smarter for recognizing it as high art.

jk but I still am fine with having classifications. Eg a full orchestra in a concert hall may be called "high art" even if it's mediocre, and a blues guitarist on the street may be low art by definition but could be creating masterpieces. Think "Ballad of Curtis Loew."
 
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lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
These labels are subjective and honestly not that important, unless you're concerned with a particular kind of value - a cultural notion of "good/bad" and monetary value.
i think that most artists in history implicitly believe in the cultural notion of good/bad, profound/vulgar, etc. art cannot be produced in a vacuum after all, and cultural esteem is the currency of artistic discipline, imo
 
_AllCatsAreGrey_

_AllCatsAreGrey_

(they/he)
Mar 4, 2024
284
>> Has stood the test of time.
So it wasn't high art when it was made?

Much of what we consider high art now was not when it was made. A great example is the Impressionists. During their time the established art world saw them as naive, garish, and even disturbing. Tastes rapidly change in the artworld.
i think that most artists in history implicitly believe in the cultural notion of good/bad, profound/vulgar, etc. art cannot be produced in a vacuum after all, and cultural esteem is the currency of artistic discipline, imo
For sure. I feel this has changed a lot in modern art though, hence the general disdain for it by many. (Full disclosure: not me.) Indeed, I feel contemporary work often discusses this in a very different way than traditional high art.

Not all artists produce work to get cultural acclaim.

Overall I feel this thread opens up the fact that art is a very broad topic and includes many purposes, world views, and values. Honestly, that's what I love about art. It is a fertile field of discussion and introspection.
 
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DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
Much of what we consider high art now was not when it was made. A great example is the Impressionists. During their time the established art world saw them as naive, garish, and even disturbing. Tastes rapidly change in the artworld.

For sure. I feel this has changed a lot in modern art though, hence the general disdain for it by many. (Full disclosure: not me.) Indeed, I feel contemporary work often discusses this in a very different way than traditional high art.

Not all artists produce work to get cultural acclaim.

Overall I feel this thread opens up the fact that art is a very broad topic and includes many purposes, world views, and values. Honestly, that's what I love about art. It is a fertile field of discussion and introspection.

independent of what classification it is given by contemporaries. a lot of high art today shall be forgotten in years to come. certainly not an objective criterion, but the best we have towards striving to produce great works

Great works are produced by people with talent who get "lost" in their work.
 
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_AllCatsAreGrey_

_AllCatsAreGrey_

(they/he)
Mar 4, 2024
284
Great works are produced by people with talent who get "lost" in their work.
I like that description, if we broaden the idea of talent beyond craft skill. (Not to say that's what you mean, but I feel that's the common thought of talent.) Example, one can make great music without being a good musician.
 
lamargue

lamargue

pugilist
Jun 5, 2024
196
Great works are produced by people with talent who get "lost" in their work.
agree, though this might have the trouble of falling into a just-world fallacy (as i believe goethe held about great works).
 
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DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
agree, though this might have the trouble of falling into a just-world fallacy (as i believe goethe held about great works).
Some artists like to shock, some like to soothe. Shock artists are often initially rejected.
 
DarkRange55

DarkRange55

Enlightened
Oct 15, 2023
1,390
Is the Canna Lily photo "Art". By whose definition? The answer to the question of why "artists" produce "art" is as complex as you'd like its definition to be. My parents displayed my 3 year old crayon scribbles on the wall and called it art. My definitions of "art" have changed over the years. I used to read ArtForum magazine reviews to learn the lingo and learn what their reviewers thought was worth writing about. My definitions of beauty (as applied to what I have experienced as art) over the years have evolved or devolved). One of the factors that's important now is about my perception of originality or "newness": have I ever seen or experienced anything like that before? I thought POP "art" was art. I thought Dan Flavin's and Don Judd's and Carl Andre's stuff was art. Almost anything I saw in an art gallery was art. I got confused about "utility": craft is about utility like fine pottery: but a 400 year old Chinese pot is fine art? Or art is "simply" decoration like the Medieval Tapestries? I thought tapestries were to reduce drafts in castles? Or for floor coverings in Persia?
Or is this Canna Lily photo more "arty"? I like beauty in art. Is the Keane beautiful? Or is it kitsch and cliche? As you shared, some artists want their art to be admired, others want the "admiration" to result in a sale. Some artists, poets, composers feel compelled to express an idea inspired by that mysterious artistic Muse in Greek and Roman mythology each of nine
goddesses who preside over the arts and sciences. They will keep producing no matter if any body cares. The ones who eventually become well know initially had as if by magic just one enthusiastic fan who loved and promoted. As you say, the relationship between the artist, his or her audience which include the art dealers, the art critics, the museums, the publishers, the auction houses, the manufacturers of paper, ink, paint, the big art festival promoters, the lighting, sound recording engineers, the impresarios the agents, the managers, the "Influencers" is fantastically complex and dynamic. To get to a definition is sort of a "whack a mole" problem. What is beautiful or interesting for one is derivative or boring or in bad taste for another. Read:


I met in St Louis a collector of Tiffany Lamps. At that time I was learning about them. I thought wow! I like Tiffany Lamps! Problem: I didn't like them enough to spend $50,000 for one. I've never owned one. This collector also had covering every wall large, photorealistic paintings by various artists of nude women. Hmm, I thought, judgmentally, bad taste for art but good taste for Tiffany. This seemed like cognitive dissonance to me. I didn't want to be like that, I thought. A collector of photorealism and nudes would think, Tiffany lamps are no good because they don't give off much light-these beautiful paintings need to be well lit!
 
CTB Dream

CTB Dream

Disabled. Hard talk, don't argue, make fun, etc
Sep 17, 2022
2,217
Art many posbl, see thing set but no rly way say high set low set, this say defn only simil style etc, can take high art transfm low vicvrs
 
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Edpal247

Edpal247

Student
Jul 9, 2024
172
Traditionaaly high art was strictly for aestetics. Low are was art combined with a utilitarian purpose - basically crafts and craftspersonship. The line can be very blurred.. I was a glass artist for years - my vases and bowls were generally made for aesthetics but they were food safe. It is an outdated construct, imo.
 

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