Arts

Latest Articles

Arts
81
Arts
46
Arts
47
Arts
62
Arts
73
Arts
43
Arts
110
Arts
64
Arts
62
Arts
37

Latest Topics

2

The Prediction of the Future Through Art

In the 19th century, Oscar Wilde wrote in ‘The Decay of Lying’ that, "Life imitates art far more than art imitates life… results not merely from life’s imitative instinct, but from the fact that the self-conscious aim of life is to find expression, and that art offers it certain beautiful forms through which it may realize that energy." According to Wilde, what people find in life and nature is actually not there, but what people find is what artists have taught them to find through art. So, does life imitate art or does art imitate life? In light of these questions, is it possible for art to predict the future? Which artwork by which artist do you think predicted the future?

  • The writer can choose any artwork from any artist, from any era to analyze. For example, Amalia Ulman masterpiece, “Excellences & Perfections”, which was dubbed by art critics as the “first Instagram masterpiece” could be an artwork worth the analysis. – Laurika Nxumalo 1 week ago
    2
  • People tend to idealise life, paint a picture based on their consumption of art, even in mediums like film (especially romantic films). So many people build mannerisms, plan events, do activities, based on what they see in films, what they read in books... I don't think that art predicts the future, but rather it manifests conditions for people to build experiences very similar to what they see in art, because that's what they idealise and strive towards. Does NASA continue to fund space research because of science fiction films like '2001: A Space Odyssey'? Maybe, maybe not (and if they did we'd never know). Will the events in those films actually occur? Who knows—but if they do, you might bet the people reacting to them will have seen those circumstances in art they have consumed, and respond accordingly. – Patrick 1 week ago
    0
7

Are radio edits a necessary evil or detrimental to artistic integrity?

Occasionally, a music artist will release a song that is deemed unsuitable for radio play in its current form. It might contain profanity or profane subject material, have undesired instrumentation, or simply be too long for the radio to play. A new version of the song will be created as a "radio edit" that alters the original to meet governmental standards. These changes can range from inconsequential, like replacing one profane word with a sound effect, to substantial, such as replacement lyrics that completely change the original meaning of the song. Famous radio edits include Cee Lo Green’s "Forget You," d-12’s "Purple Hills," and Everlast’s "What’s It Like."

Usually these edits are not made by the artists themselves but by their record labels, broadcasters at the corporate level, or even individual radio stations. Whether minor or major, these changes produce a product that is not what the artist envisioned without the artists’ input. Without these changes, these songs would not play on the radio or in spaces that must abide by government guidelines relating to content standards. Is the radio edit process a necessary evil to becoming a successful artist? Or is the act of altering art in order to conform to public sensibilities harmful to the role of art in our contemporary culture that constantly encourages us to "express yourself?" Especially in the era of the internet and the seemingly endless ways to create and distribute art outside traditional distribution institutions, should corporations compromising an artist’s intended vision to please the masses be considered a malicious act? Or should this new-found freedom provided by the internet encourage society to support art as the artist creates it, even if it offends?

  • This is a fascinating point in the process of musical production that not many people consider. Much like the Hayes code of early Hollywood, such censorship can seem extreme and archaic in a modern society that no longer requires major industries to support success. The examples you give are telling ones since it's easy to classify which genres are more censored compared to others, which could be an interesting aspect to explore. This practice of radio edits may be a hangover of a previous era since tiktok seems to be the predominant platform dominating the music market today. Exploring the alternatives (youtube, tiktok, instagram etc.), which genres or artists are targeted, and the origins for WHY such edits were made, could be a good division of the topic. – LadyAcademia 8 months ago
    1
  • This is such an interesting thought! As a lifelong hater of radio edits, I’ve never thought of it this way - I would look into which artists get censored the most and their similarities (if any). – kelleykilgore 8 months ago
    0
  • It's also interesting to think of what music never lent itself to radio edits to begin with, and what music was particularly pushed into it. The metro area I'm from has a radio station which used to have a motto "All the best hits, without the rap." For the most part it was true, the station played pop music by all sorts of artists. But when Macklemore's Thrift Shop became big, the station played it, despite the song featuring rap... Race and politics clearly play a role in determining what music is deemed "appropriate", a role that for the most part likely goes unseen and unacknowledged, just as many people observe never thinking of the impact of radio edits. On a somewhat different note, I only recently discovered the song "I Dig Rock and Roll" by Peter, Paul, and Mary. For those unfamiliar with it, it seems to celebrate Rock and Roll while actually mocking it. It has a lyric incredibly relevant to this topic - "I think I could say something if you know what I mean/But if I really say it, the radio won't play it/Unless I lay it between the lines!" Very interesting lyric, it's stuck with me! – ronannar 4 months ago
    1
  • I agree that this topic is fascinating. I have never really thought about it, but just reading through the idea and the comments has me thinking of different ways things are edited and how heavily (and how times we might not know it because at some point we'd only ever heard it on the radio). Could be arguments that it's helped in cases, as well? Something like Let's Get It Started? How would that have been played in so many places without an edit? (And I suppose, is that right or wrong?) – rieder21 3 months ago
    1
2

Artificial Intelligence: The Future of Music?

Ever since Schubert abandoned his 8th Symphony in 1822, six years before his death, after writing the first two movements, composers, musicologists, and general lovers of classical music, have wondered why the symphony was left unfinished – was Schubert ill? Was he distracted with other compositions? But mostly we have wondered about what the final two movements would have sounded like.

In 2019, Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant, answered this conundrum by completing the famous "Unfinished" Symphony by feeding thousands of Schubert’s works into the software that would hopefully produce material in the style of Schubert – as he would have thought it himself. This process was guided by the film composer Lucas Cantor, but still the result was heavily criticised.

AI has since been used in music to generate pop songs, many of which are indistinguishable from human-made hits we hear on the radio. Is the use of AI in musical composition just like any other technological innovation in that it aids the composer in their process, automating tedious tasks, and so on? Or are we facing a real fear of being stuck in a ‘loop’ of the same musical tastes, without the extra push of human creativity and invention, since AI runs on analysing pre-existing examples?

The author could further discuss the differences and similarities between AI software recognising patterns, and how humans often compose from well-studied patterns also.

  • It is critical to consider: Even if you ultimately develop fresh, surprising things, everytime you strive to create something new, you always generate it from what you already know. Everything you perceive, comprehend, hold dear, or do always springs from information your brain has already gathered or processed. Your brain is continuously collecting the past for use in a variety of ways, such as putting the sounds you've stored in new settings. Therefore, it shouldn't be any different from the human situation when we state that "since AI runs on analyzing pre-existing examples". – Samer Darwich 3 weeks ago
    1
  • I don't know enough about this topic to really comment in depth, but I just want to say I would find this extremely interesting to read about! – Caylee 3 weeks ago
    0
2

The Merits and Flaws of A.I. Art

The art world is current having a bit of a controversy about the nature of the soul in Art with the rise of programs like DALL-E 2, Stable Diffusion and Craiyon that allow for the submission of prompts to generate visual media. While many laud this as another innovation of the digital age others such as traditionally defined artists view it as not only "soulless" that is to say made without the efforts and passions of a creator but also a form of stealing as the A.I. typically process art and art styles without credit and attribution only to then to produce something that is given credit as though it was wholly unique. This brings up the ethical questions of the generators and that immortal question, "What IS Art?"

  • A.I. Art reminds us that art is a learnable skill. If we can teach a computer to follow style guidelines and create images, humans can certainly learn the same skills. – noahspud 2 months ago
    1
  • I am reminded of Walter Benjamin's piece on art in the age of mechanical reproduction. The uptick in A.I. art is a great opportunity to review some of Benjamin's original propositions. The question of artistic merit is worth digging into—what matters in a judgment of merit might be context-dependent rather than intrinsic. – JackWalton 2 months ago
    1
  • I think this would be a good topic to explore if it was focused on something more specific about the relationship between AI and its creator/participant. While it does bring up the same old questions of what is art, it would perhaps be more interesting to put a spin on those old questions by looking at what function AI art serves in the area of identify for those with the tools and the agency to create a kind of sentient intelligence and personality in cooperation with their own skills, but at the same time, outside of their own control. You know what springs to mind, is the conversation between Basil Hallward and Lord Henry Wotton, especially when he starts talking about this: “He is all my art to me now,” said the painter gravely. “I sometimes think, Harry, that there are only two eras of any importance in the world’s history. The first is the appearance of a new medium for art, and the second is the appearance of a new personality for art also." – taleialani 1 month ago
    0
1

Page to stage: adapting works for live performance

Consider examples of literature or film that have had theatre adaptations (e.g. Dorian Gray, Sydney Theatre Company; Cyrano, Melbourne Theatre Company, and analyse how these works have been shifted and/or restructured for a live performance context.

  • I think it would be interesting to explore how the constraints of the new medium affect the adaptation, as well as the choices that are made (what is taken out, what is kept in and why) by the person who adapts it. Maybe you could narrow your topic down to a specific adaptation to make it a little more detailed, since it currently seems like you are taking on a huge deal if you're studying multiple texts. – Sangnat 2 months ago
    0
  • For the record, Cyrano de Bergerac was a stage play FIRST, before any of its many film adaptations. – ProtoCanon 2 months ago
    0
4
Locked

"I Don't Like ****, I Don't Go Outside" An Exploration of Depression

"I Don’t Like ****, I Don’t Go Outside" is the sophomore album by Odd Future Alum, Earl Sweatshirt. Despite maintain a level of darkness in his tone and instrumentation, Earl is distinctly alien from his former self. Gone are the edgy shock-lyrics of cannibalism and murder, replaced instead by a vulnerable young man drowning in depression reliant on drugs and alcohol to keep himself going.

What is it to be a celebrity? A chosen one at that, to be the idol of millions of people you’ve never met while isolated from your friends and family. The album speaks to the thin veneer of happiness success can really be.

Earl was often a center piece of the fandom from the "FREE EARL" days and yet it doesn’t seem as though the freedom was very liberatory. The lack of hope and overwhelming sense of abject bleakness from Earl speaks to the hollow nature of what was gained by his fame and his regrets seem innumerable as each song on the album falls further in further into an inky blackness of despair.

That then begs the question, what does this album serve? Is it just a self-exploration or can there be some universal message garnered from the album? What can be said of Earl and his developments as an artist? What of the raised awareness about depression and how it can shape and distort a person’s view not just of themself but of the world around them.

  • Agree with first person. You do a good job summarizing what the album is about, but what specific question are you trying to ask? – Montayj79 3 months ago
    1
Taken by Isobel Archer (PM) 4 weeks ago.
6

The Fashion of the Met Gala: Why Are We So Obsessed?

The Met Gala, an annual fundraising event for the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York, invites famous actors and actresses, artists, designers, internet personalities, and even athletes to walk the steps of the Met in usually very elaborate themed costumes.

Some of the most iconic past Met Gala themes include “In America: An Anthology of Fashion” (2022), “Camp: Notes on Fashion” (2019), and “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” (2018).

The internet explodes with praises, critiques, and even mockeries of Met Gala attendees’ fashion every year. So why are we so obsessed with it? What are its impacts artistically, historically, socially, politically, etc.? What is its place in art history?

  • Personally, in my opinion a lot of the met gala's appeal can be explained by the popularity and wealth of the attendees. Which leads us to ponder the question: Why are we so obsessed with celebrities in the first place? I think that to write this topic, you would have to address this and clearly contextualise the met gala as existing within a globalised, capitalist system. This is a really interesting topic and I feel like further contextualisation would make for a more insightful article – 64bitdreaming 6 months ago
    3
  • To simply put it, we are obsessed with bourgeois events such as the Met Gala because we are bored and have poor time management. We don't believe that we too can achieve such heights as those invited to the gala so we resolve to the idea that they are somehow superior to us. They are GODs and we are mere mortals meant to dote and fawn over the pumps of Cardi-B or the bustier of Nicki Minaj. Society has always been like this and it will never change, the hierarchy of human beings is established to keep those up UP and those down DOWN. It's not at all about fashion or glamour it's about the variety of unhealthy addictions society continues to engage in because why would we want to obsess over things that actually matter such as global warming? Simply because it's boring? Or is it because we need distractions from the unfortunate truth about society and the world? – Seth1995 2 months ago
    0
  • Very interesting! I think it has a lot to do with class and how unreal it seems. What is not inherently entertaining becomes so because of its detachment from the common experience. – Anna Samson 2 months ago
    0
  • Fashion is exciting! I think we take interest in or obsess over the fashion at the Met Gala because it's themed. We get excited at seeing how our favorite celebrities interpreted the theme through fashion. Sometimes we just want to have a good laugh or just deepen our admiration for a certain person. – Laurika Nxumalo 2 months ago
    0
5

September 11 in the Arts

September 11, 2001 changed the world as we know it. Mere weeks after the terrorist attack that destroyed the Twin Towers, artists from all mediums responded to the tragedy with forms of self-expression that gave themselves and their consumers safe, multifaceted outlets to express their complex emotions. September 11 is now the subject of everything from hard-hitting documentaries and touching memoirs to gentle, yet serious episodes of kids’ shows and perhaps controversial country-western songs.

Analyze and discuss some of your favorite, or least favorite, tributes to September 11 within the arts. What makes these tributes powerful, or conversely, disturbing or controversial? Which pieces do the best job of honoring the 9/11 survivors and victims? Do we need more 9/11 pieces, and if so, what should their focus and goals be? Can new pieces be tied into more current tragedies, historical ones, or a mix of the two?

  • Jonathan Safran Foer's "Incredibly Loud and Extremely Close" and Art Spiegelman's "In the Shadow of No Towers" are both deeply profound works revolving around 9/11. Both provide insight into the aftermath of 9/11, particularly how it affected families of the victims and the mindset of Americans. Any article on this topic would be incomplete without mentioning these books. – Zack Rynhold 3 months ago
    2