September 1, 2021 theory

A Theory of Art

lest I ever have to try this shit in a tweet again.


Artist - someone who, for whatever reason, makes something they or others consider Art.

Art - something described as such by a Viewer.

Viewer - someone who looks at something and considers it Art. This can be the Artist.

An Artist creates something according to whatever whim. This might be unconscious reflex/need or a desire to communicate. It doesn’t particularly matter.

The Viewer looks at this something. If they see it as Art, they will think with it and generate meaning. This might be a process of asking questions, processing the Art through an internal system or just allowing themselves to become infected by it. Everyone will have their own syncretic approach to thinking with Art.

The meaning exists within the viewer, not within the Art. The Art is a catalyst for thought and feeling.

Won’t Artist intent shape the thought of the Viewer?

If the Viewer wants it to, probably. You can decide to let it in, read against it, ignore it, do whatever. Nothing exists in a vacuum, but you are not powerless either.

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