What makes art good or bad? | RMIT University

What makes art good or bad? | RMIT University


(uplifting orchestra music) – So the question is, what makes a piece of art good or bad? That’s kind of an interesting question most people usually ask the question; that’s not art is it? And I think once you ask that question you tend to close things down you say not art or is art. But, actually start to think differently. Start to think – What
do I think is good art? What do I think is bad art? Because the minute you do that, you start to think to yourself
what are my value judgements? So, when you see a piece of art, whether it’s a painting,
a print, or a sculpture. Start saying – How does this talk to me? Does it engage me? Does it interest me? Do I want to know more? Because the minute you start
asking a painting, or a print, or a sculpture about itself
you’re in a dialogue. It starts talking back to you and the minute that happens, suddenly, the world opens up for you. You start asking why did
the artist do it this way? Why should they have
done it a different way? What is it telling me about
the world view of the artist? And what more do I need
to know about the artist in order to be able to expand my knowledge of that piece of art? So the minute you ask more
than just like, don’t like, it just opens up a whole
world of possibilities and you are now part of the
conversation with art work it’s a great place to be. So, when I go into an art gallery, I don’t look at everything. I choose four or five pieces of work and then I kind of give it two rules. Two rules to me, one is, does it say something?
Is it about something? It may be about the colour orange. It may be about the
view and the landscape. It may be about the cloud
structure in a painting. It may be about the
materials in a sculpture. Is it primarily about
something that I find engaging? And, the second one I suppose,
does it do it convincingly? Does the artist really convince
me they know their craft, they know their subject, they know what they’re trying to say? Apply those rules and I think
you’re on steady ground. But, above all ask questions,
find out more, dig deep, and you’ll gain hugely
from the experience. So, finally when you
look at a piece of art, remember to keep your mind open, keep an imagination really fertile, because if you’ve got a closed mind, you might as well have closed eyes. (upbeat orchestra music)

Dereck Turner

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