Alexandra Mouriki
University of Patras
Art education literature has not given great deal of attention to that which constitutes the very content of art education, i.e. art. This reluctance to deal with art seems justified, given that there exists no overall accepted definition or interpretation of what art actually is. In this paper, we argue that, despite the difficulty, it is absolutely necessary to try to understand and reflect on the multidimensional and polyvalent phenomenon of art. We claim that without a deep understanding of the nature, the role and scope of art, the field of art education can not be adequately delineated. Without this understanding, questions about the kind of objects and values which should be studied within art education are held over, its content risks being hetero-defined and its special contribution underestimated. Beginning with an understanding of art as a complex phenomenon, deeply implicated in historical and cultural transformations and changes, this paper argues for the necessity of a critical rethinking of art. We try to show that the question “what is art?” is a key question in order to draw attention to the multiplicity and the open nature of the artistic phenomenon, upon which our educational choices will be found. Our object is not to impose one and only answer as a unique and unwavering option, but to describe an educational condition which recognizes the multiple practices and the many points of view as parts of the organized activity and knowledge about art, while putting them under critical examination
Keywords Re-thinking Art, De-definition/Re-definition of Art, Art Interpretation, Aesthetic Experience, Art Education
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