Perspectives in the Arts
The stories behind a piece of art are infinite. The reasons the artist produced the piece is only one explanation behind the work. Even so, who is to know the specific thoughts the artist was thinking at the time? As each art critic may conclude his own analysis of an artwork, who is right and who is wrong? Just as students challenge the information that is supposedly “deposited” in them by the teacher in the classroom setting, art challenges the belief- that information can only be used as it was intended, which is highly rare in our day and age.
The concept of perspectivism falls into place in this scenario. Art is perceived differently by varying individuals. There can be millions of interpretations that exist for one piece of artwork, however none more or less correct than the next interpretation. Similar to teachers depositing information to the students, each student may receive the information in different contexts. Whose to say whether or not the students’ interpretation is wrong? As writer John Berger points out the concept of reproducing art, in his essay “Ways of Seeing,” he addresses the idea how perspectives change completely when an artwork is reproduced to be used in a different context. As this is done, new thoughts and interpretations are created, thus can be seen as a progression of ideas. Writer Paulo Freire used the idea that “knowledge emerges only through invention and re-invention(Freire 348)” in his essay, “The ‘Banking’ Concept of Education.” This idea is the essence of what Berger is trying to point out through the reproducing of art. That the reproduction of art is basically the “re-invention” of the ideas and interpretations that already exist. And thus only through the re-invention of art, new ideas and new interpretations can be formed, a progression of ideas, achieving true knowledge.
“[Art] becomes information of a sort, and, like all information, it is either put to use or ignored(Berger 120)”. Each individual sees art differently, images become information that is incorporated with the individual’s own knowledge and personality. As art is reproduced over and over again in different contexts, the artist’s original purpose of the image is altered, a progression from old ideas to new ideas. Clearly one can see how the original intended purpose of the art is gone, and new purposes have evolved.
Based on perspectivism “people develop their power to perceive critically the way to exist in the world with which and in which they find themselves(Freire 356)”. Images of art enhances how one views the world around him. Infinite meanings behind an image expands one’s vision to see much more, to think much more, and to believe much more. “Our vision is continually active, continually moving, continually holding things in a circle around itself, constituting what is present to us as we are(Berger 106)”....