The term “art” encompasses a large variety of works, from paintings to sculptures, architecture to design, and in modern times, digital art. Everyone can appreciate and marvel at art, and being subjective in nature, different art forms appeal to different people. Art appreciation, however, refers to the exploration and analysis of the art forms that we are exposed to. It can be highly subjective, depending on an individual’s personal tastes and preferences, or can be done on the basis of several grounds such as elements of design and mastery displayed in the piece. Art appreciation also involves a deeper look into the setting and historical implication and background of the piece, a study of it’s origins.
Art is dynamic, with new trends and styles emerging at a fast pace. However, the final attempt of the artist is that it speaks to the viewer on a personal level and can be interpreted in a variety of ways. Art opens up the stream of subconscious and intends to personally touch every person that comes across it.
Art appreciation is extremely relevant for multiple reasons. It is a good way to understand the history behind the work, and the period from which the piece originated. Artists often reflect the problems that they face, and the issues of the society in their work. By analyzing and putting ourselves in the mind of the artist, we can better study how differently society functioned then, compared to now. We can empathize and relate to the problems they faced on a personal level.
Art is meant to stimulate thought and conversation between it’s viewers. By reflecting on a piece of art, we delve into our own experiences and nostalgia, thus a piece of art means something different to every person that comes across it. Art appreciation helps open up the mindset of the people, by listening to different perspective es and views as well as interpretations of the art, it encourages thoughtful conversation and the understanding that there is more than one approach to everything.
For many people, art is meant to express something that we ourselves feel unable to express or convey. Through it’s visual medium it evokes feelings of joy, sadness, anger and pain. That is why art appreciation is so important in bringing that one final element to complete the work, and that is our interpretation. Our perspective brings the artwork to life as it changes for every person around it.
It is important to foster art appreciation and analysis, as it helps us value the art in how it appeals to us and what it means to each person. It delves into the history and the story behind the art, as well as a look into the lives of the artists. It enables one to critically analyze a work, along lines of design, mastery and techniques. Most importantly, however, art appreciation stimulates though and analysis, provokes an individual to look past what meets the eye and open our mind to the views of others.
The author is Narendra Desirazu, Director of Jennard Galleries, that hosts art appreciation programs for students.