There are two major definitions of art. The first, called classical, definition holds that an artwork is an artifact created by a particular artist and thereby presented to a specific artworld audience. The second definition, called historical, holds that an artwork stands in art-historical relation to earlier works. These two definitions tend to conflate the two concepts, and the result is an indistinguishable set of rules and distinctions.
While both definitions have some merit, the traditional definitions underplay the inexplicability of art and thus leave the question of its value unanswered. On the other hand, the latter definitions include substantive descriptions that describe an expert’s ability to discern historical connections between established artworks. These definitions of art, therefore, are necessary for constructing a comprehensive and meaningful discussion of art and its relation to our lives. Here are some examples.
Fine art is an artistic form that focuses on the creation of beautiful, functional objects. Applied art is concerned with creating items that can be used in everyday life, and involves a diverse range of aesthetic principles. Among its many areas, applied art encompasses computer art, industrial design, and fashion design. Similarly, folk art is primarily concerned with applied art, while decorative arts include painting, sculpture, and fashion. The Bauhaus Design School, for example, has an extensive list of artworks.
Artworks of the past show the importance of religion. While it is true that not all people practiced the same religion in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, many people remain religiously active today. In this sense, religion was important to a lot of people in sixteenth and seventeenth-century Europe. Whether to display religious devotion was a matter of culture, knowledge, and pride. That’s why art works are so important.
The second definition of art seeks to distinguish different types of art. Art is not merely a collection of objects with a particular purpose. It may have many purposes, and each can be considered art. This definition, however, excludes entities that are not part of a culturally distinct institution. Androcentric definitions of art are problematic as they place different purposes of creation within the same category. This leaves open the possibility of unity underlying apparent multiplicity.
The third definition of art refers to the different types of works created by artists. Some artists use a broad range of materials and techniques to create their art. This includes painting in oils, watercolours, and acrylics, as well as sculpture in stone and wood. Some of the most famous examples of abstract art are works by Pablo Picasso. In the past, a wide variety of artworks have been classified according to the material that they’re made of.
According to this definition, an object is an artwork if: