Why Is Art, Art? Who Decides

Cheri Alcaraz
Professor Tafarella
English 101                                       Why is Art, Art? Who Decides
          I was searching thru an Art book of mine looking for a piece of Art for this paper. A couple of days into searching I found a piece of artwork that perplexed me, it was all one color. The artist was Clifford Still and Colour Field Painting was the art movement. Colour Field Painting is a when single colour predominates the canvas and when slight colour changes are confined to the periphery. Variety of colour was achieved by rich texture and brushstrokes. The viewer was left to decide the statement the artist was trying to make. Why was this considered art? How did Colour Field Painting begin? It occurred to me that for each of these works of Art there is a movement. I wanted to know how these periods changed and how they were arrived at. Did someone control the decisions; was it the artists or something else?
          I did assume going into this paper that history did play a big part in changes in the artists styles and themes. I had taken an Art Appreciation class that opened my eyes in the way I view art and how it has changed throughout the years. My new view only touched on the surface of what would be a huge endeavor to find the truth.
          The political climate of an era had a great influence on artists’ works of art. Wars, free love, woman’s rights and the plight of the poor just to name a few have been seen in famous art work for thousands of years. Caravaggio, Millet and Picasso all had a powerful impact on arts historical movements. What I couldn’t figure out was who was in control of the decision to flow out of one movement to the next. I searched several internet sites and found the definition of artistic movements and a very, very long list of them. So many I hadn’t even heard of and some of them seemed silly or trivial. I continued searching in several art books and found to my surprise that as the movements flowed...