WTF is Art?
We all have a perception of what it is, but do any of us really know what “art” is? Modern capitalist culture tells us that it’s the stuff that hangs in upscale galleries and is auctioned off to the highest bidder. But, on the contrary, the commodification of art with an arbitrary price tag only taints its essential nature and priceless connection to our senses.
There is a conversation to be had when interacting with and experiencing art. Why are you attracted to this art? How does it engage your senses? What emotions does it evoke within you? Do you see a part of yourself reflected in the art? Does it inspire you?
Art isn’t limited to the superficial level of aesthetics. Art is alive and is about the entire creative journey from the artist’s inception to the viewer’s reception. The beauty of art is in its ability to transcend physical and cultural borders as a universal language that can be understood by anyone and everyone. There is no such thing as a “right” or “wrong” answer and it’s utterly fruitless to try and dissect the artist’s original intention or message because each person, the artist included, has their own unique interpretation. The beauty isn’t necessarily in the art itself, but within the interpretation that acts as a reflection of our own humanity.
My definition of art doesn’t rely on its exhibited level of expertise but rather upon the personal connection I forge with it. It’s difficult to define because it is less of a thing and more of a feeling. Art is a fluid and malleable language that allows us to express ourselves when words aren’t enough. True art reminds us that we are all capable of making beautiful things. True art reminds us that we, as humans, are destined to create, not destroy. True art reminds us that our humanity is the common thread that runs through each and every one of us.
Julia Eunji Choi