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what is art?

“…to the point that now, it feels primitive indeed to draw on the iPhone” ~ Jorge Colombo

Jorge Colombo is an iPad artist who literally fingerpaints his art. But while your 4 year old niece fingerpaints too, Jorge’s work is featured on the cover of the New Yorker this month – you can also see his artwork at – and it brings up a great topic – what is art now?

  • is Instagram art?
  • is art sculptured crayons?
  • is art an installation of repurposed living room lamps hung over a street?
  • is art some ‘old master’ that you can’t even relate to?

Or should we even be talking about this at all? That’s what Kennedy Harsh says, “We shouldn’t label what art is – it’s whatever an individual thinks it is.”

Kailynn Nichols adds, ‘Art is expression. It doesn’t have to mean anything except to the person who made it. It’s up for interpretation. LIke Picasso, for example, you have no idea what that is, but you can look at it and form your own interpretation.’

But what, I asked them, about public art? What about spending money on something they might see as lame as opposed to something an older person might find shocking? To be more specific, how did they feel about a city, say, spending a lot of money on a statue of a little girl holding a balloon? To my surprise, the students I asked were all for it – evidently, the more art, the better!

Taylor Channel summed it up, “Art is a general consensus – and everybody sees it differently.”

So I asked them: what about art education? If Kennedy has years and years of education and experience with art and Kailynn comes to the table with none of that, but they’re both in Europe writing about art, whose blog should I follow? In other words, is there value in an art education?

Brittany Craig: “Art education can teach us how to respect other people’s opinions. It can make you see things in a different way, so it can help you with your art too.”

Can anyone do art? Why wouldn’t your niece be featured on the cover of the New Yorker? Marcellas Williams says, “Art is something that’s designed – you can’t go out and build a tree so that’ not art.” This brought up such a lively amount of disagreement that think I will save it for another blog post – but meanwhile, you can sound off here: What is art?

There is 1 comment. Add Yours.

Dana Myers —

Art is a powerful form of communication. It can give you a competitive edge and make you stand out from others. Good article!

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