Without question, the mere meaning of the word art is subject to interpretation, especially considering the mystifying world of twentieth-century art. Nonetheless, the purpose of this paper is an effort to demonstrate that art is definable. The interchangeability and kaleidoscopic dimensions of art is a forecast of profound divergences, aspects, and opinions in every realm of existence. Art is ubiquitous it is seen everywhere and is created by everyone. Karl Marx stated in so many words that the history of the world is the history of class struggle and while this may be true to a point, the history of the world may very well be the history and development of art and the body of philosophy called aesthetics. "In short, the history of human experience is a history of the development of arts (Cohoon 2000)." Often time's art is representative of political ideas and statements and because of these ideas and statements, art can narrowly, and at times broadly, be construed to have definition. A definition of aesthetics is a branch of philosophy concerned with the perception and quintessence of what regards artistic merit versus lack of artistic merit. Aesthetics also concerns inquiries into whether artistic qualities underlie objectively qualified definitions of a particular mode or character of what constitutes aesthetics. With respect to this topic, Philosophers ask many questions about whether a work of art is beautiful or ugly (i.e., ugly meaning that which cannot be considered having artistic value), and ultimately weight in a multitude of various interpretations of what a work of art represents. As we will see in this paper, there are diverse and even, at times, conflicting views of what philosophers mean when they say a particular piece of work has artistic merit.
Characterizations of Art
There are narrowly focused universal generalities about what art and aesthetics represent. With regard to aesthetics, perception is constant and always present. Some of the requirements of creative perception are as follows:
1. Art is elusive;
2. Art is obvious;
3. Corresponds on various planes and is subject to elucidation;
4. Abilities and skills are presence;
5. Relationship exists between what is considered a conscious or unconscious interpretation of art and of our understanding of what is considered our life force, between what is real and what is illusion;
6. Any human creation which contains an idea other than its utilitarian purpose;
7. Creations for the sole purpose of importing what is considered art (i.e., music, paintings, dance, architecture, sculpting, theater); and
8. Patriot and Atavistic idealism expressed in all art forms.
Judgments of Art
Art is also at the mercy of judgments of value. Judgments value and gage such elements as to what consideration good art is as opposed to what bad art is and, therefore, requires a basis of criticism that in turns requires a body of standards.
According to some schools of thought, perception and acuity cleave unto experiences and reactions to great art or degrading art and such experiences skew the hypothesis of such experiences. Nonetheless and despite the divergences of the understanding of quality, once there is agreement, aesthetic choices are manifested, the value of art determines the faculty to surpass the limits of the judgments and a universal chord of acceptance is achieved.
Conversely, George Dickie, a controversial philosopher of art and aesthetic in the analytical tradition and whose body of work, debated hotly in the 1970s and 1980s, has argued against numerous generally