In other Words?
The concept that any art form is a skill is not new to art history. But, since it is never a skillful art, to speak in that sense, art does not need to be in order to produce a certain aesthetic experience. When we speak of art as something for which one does not have skills, we seem to be talking about a talent. Not even a skill, let alone a talent is in itself a skillful art. To use an old-fashioned term, in order to make art, one must know how to make art, otherwise one would not be a painter. There is an endless variety of possible techniques for the execution and production of art and that is why the concept of art as a particular skill is not specific enough. However, I don’t think art is necessarily a skill. But it can be taught. There are lessons for every artist. And, as many of them have been said, art is a game, with a certain amount of skill and chance involved. What is a teacher supposed to do with this? If I teach you French, then it may be an error to say that you need to learn the language; but it is equally clear that you must have some understanding of it. On the other hand, if I make you look at a painting for an hour, it may not be an error to say that I didn’t make you watch enough pictures in order for you to notice the difference between them and the ones that will come before you. At the same time, as a teacher, I cannot know the art that you will make until I have studied it.
What is the definition of good art? Is it good art which comes to us from nature or is it good art which arrives at us by a man’s imagination?
Good art comes from nature. Art which was inspired in man’s conception of nature is also good art. But the definition of good art does not stop at the boundaries between art and nature. Art which arises from ideas of beauty and harmony is also good art. Or a painter’s invention of a new idea of beauty might be good art if in the process of inventing it we were also using and developing the other kinds of good art: painting, sculpture, architecture, painting landscapes, composing music. A great artist is not always a great artist from nature. The greatest painting, the one most beloved and admired by mankind, was made by an unknown painter, and that was not a very good painting. Nevertheless, I do