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The Muse Of Fine Arts

About beauty, art, and fine art


Beauty is the quality present in a thing or person that gives intense pleasure or deep satisfaction to the mind, whether arising from sensory manifestations such as shape, color, or sound, from a design or pattern, or from other sources. Most of all, beauty is something in which high spiritual qualities are manifest.


Then what is art? Art is:

  • The conscious production or arrangement of sounds, colors, forms, movements, or other aesthetic elements in a manner that positively or negatively affects an observer's sense of the beautiful or offers more than ordinary expressive significance.
  • The production of the beautiful or the ugly in a graphic or plastic medium such as painting or sculpture.
  • High quality of conception and execution, as found in works of high aesthetic value.
  • A field, genre, or category of artistic practicefor example, dance or musical performance.
  • A branch of learning or university study, especially one of the fine arts or the humanities, as music, philosophy, painting, or literature.

Art is is a field of endeavor, a genre, a practice, a performance, or an object. It is generic and inclusive in that it applies to all the arts—dancing is an art, music is an art, painting is an art. From a qualitative perspective, art is the production, expression, or realm of the beautiful or ugly, appealing or repulsive. Art must attract attention, stir feelings, and stimulate mental and emotional reaction; it must be of more than ordinary significance; and it must be conceived according to aesthetic principles and implemented in a skillful and imaginative manner.

Art doesn't have to be good art to be art, but it helps.

the visual arts; the Fine arts

The visual arts are a particular set or family of arts that are primarily intended to appeal to the visual faculties. As usually defined in arts circles, the visual arts consist of drawing, graphics, painting, sculpture, and the decorative arts.

A fine art is a visual art created primarily for aesthetic rather than practical purposes and judged for beauty and meaningfulness. As usually defined in arts circles, fine arts specifically include painting, sculpture, drawing, watercolor, graphics, and architecture. Commercial or industrial arts are not considered fine art.

Because all visual works of art obey the laws of optics and involve human eyesight, they all share a common set of visual aesthetic characteristics—for example, they all produce images that are sensible to the brain; they all deal in color; and they all have a design. Of course, that by itself doesn't make every object that can be seen a visual art object, nor does it disqualify a visible object from being visual art or Fine Art.

fine art

The Muse Of Fine Arts uses the term Fine Art in a special way that does not exactly coincide with the standard definitions of either visual art or fine art. According to The Muse, to be Fine Art a work of art or art form must meet two qualifications:

  1. It must be drawing, graphics, painting (including watercolor, gouache, or similar painting or printing medium), sculpture, work of decorative art, photograph, work of graphic art, or architectural design. It may be finished (completed and perfected in all details; polished to the highest degree of excellence) or it may be a sketch or rough sketch executed in crayon, charcoal, pencil, or similar medium. It may be decorative, industrial, commercial, or non-commercial.
  2. It must be a production or expression in the realm of Art, as The Muse uses the term. It may be beautiful and appealing or it may be ugly and objectionable. In any case, it must be of more than ordinary significance and it must be conceived according to aesthetic principles.

To be art, what counts is whether an object meets the criteria cited above. For example, an automobile must have a practical purpose, but that does not automatically prevent it from being art, or even Fine Art. Case in point: the beautiful designs for some classic cars of the '20s and '30s, for example the Cord and the Duesenberg.

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