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How Can Art Be Defined Essay

1304 words - 5 pages

The search for a definition of Art has been subject of a complex philosophical reflection incorporated; however, within different thematics because the very idea of Art is changeable as it relies on the culture and the tradition of a particular epoch.
Etymologically, the word Aesthetics derives from the Greek àisthesis, which means perception by the senses. It used to refer as the study of the world of perceptions as the doctrine aimed to discover the complexity of perceptive knowledge.
In ancient times, the concept of Art was closely related to the practice with the technique which Plato argued were, certainly, not positive.
According to the philosopher, Art and Tragedy are copies of copies, the copies of the sensible world. He argues that there is a crisis on moral grounds: Art encourages and stimulates passions inducing human beings' to approach them.
For Aristotle on the contrary, the creation of an Artwork allows for the materialization of an idea and then its manifestation. According to the philosopher, beauty is order and symmetry and Art represents its imitation, not limited just to the reproduction of the sensible world.
There then came a complete revaluation of the concept of Art that Plato despised, with new ideas explaining Art as not representing the imitation of the sensible world, but of ideas themselves. In other words, Art mimics the universal.
Furthermore, Aristotle introduces the term “catharsis” or purification, showing how Art allowed for the rationalization of passions and the consequent control of them.
Only during the eighteen century, the independent philosophical discipline that relates to the beauty of Art, namely Aesthetics, became an effective method of study.
The German philosopher Baumgarten, introduced the new meaning of the term in 1750, conceiving Aesthetics as the philosophical science that relates to Art as the beautiful.
During the Romantic period, Art is considered even superior to philosophy because it allows us to capture the spirituality of nature; Art allows for the description of nature and, consequently, the concept of beauty refers to the idea of art.
At the end of the nineteenth century and until the twentieth century, a number of factors challenged some of the traditional philosophical categories (such as those of imitation, beauty and taste) on which the Aesthetics tradition had been founded, or at least it questioned the possibility of use in the arts.
The so called “analytic philosophers” have taken the task of trying to redefine the concept of Art and among these, is the name of Beardsley C. Monroe, one of the most important, in the field of Aesthetics.
Beardsley (1983, 2004), proposed a definition that called Aesthetic and Functional, which states the interest in the aesthetic experience that the object produces in the viewer. According to the author, the term is also functional, because the condition which allows to classify an object as a “work of art” is that it satisfies a given...

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