A few weeks ago I finished reading But Is It Art by Cynthia Freeland. It’s a rather short read but contains a provocative look at art. Freeland thematically approaches this subject by discussing such topics as blood, beauty, culture, gender and comprehension.
The author raises many questions as to the meaning, aesthetics and theories behind art. Through the discussion of beauty of works such as Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus, and controversial pieces such as Andy Warhol’s Brillo Box Freeland demonstrates the breadth of art in its many forms.
Although the diversity of art is showcased and various theories proposed, no real definition of art arises. My disappointment in this read stems from a lack of resolution between what is and is not art. However, if you are looking for an in-depth view of art, theory and culture this is a must read.