Breakfast Babble is ED’s own little space on the inter-webs where we gather to discuss ideas and get pumped up (or not) for the day. We judge things too. Sometimes. Always. Whatever, call it catharsis and join in people.
The question above has been the clarion call of many an art critique. All have wondered if art that does not seek to ask questions to the authorities can be defined as art. The question has further evolved into a question that we ask of any form of art that exists just for the sake of art itself.
The very fact that any form of art that does not question the societal fabric has been dumped as nothing worth talking about makes me want to ask the question.
However, before delving into the intricacies of the question and its validity, it should be an unsaid fact that you will have to let go of all the shackles that hold you from your creativity and fall into the paradise of art.
Can Art Be Political Or Affect Society At Large?
It has been insinuated time and again that politics forms the very backbone of our day-to-day lives and it is also my belief that everything that we do or have done is political in nature. Starting from what we wear to what we eat is rooted deeply into the crevices of politics, sociopolitics, and geopolitics.
In the same way, politics affects our art as well. Our mindset and our political beliefs have a significant hold on our art indirectly. However, when it comes to the sole cause of art for art’s sake, the discussion becomes much more interesting.
Art, in its base form, exists to captivate and entertain. It may not be political and it may not confront society head first. There is no harm in portraying art just as art itself. The very fact that the portrayed art stays true to itself should be reason enough for its success.
However, many critics and analysts have argued that the primary aim of art should be to change the world around it or portray the sociopolitical circumstances around it.
That critique of art barely scratches the surface of what makes art a medium of expression and in effect is possibly the most expressive of media. However, when people critique art on the pretext of it not serving the political, they restrain art from becoming something much grander than themselves.
No amount of external critique or ‘molding’ of art can make it seem genuine for from then onwards it ceases to be the artist’s creation. It loses its purpose. Art can be for art’s sake but art cannot be ‘just’ for the sake of politics or sociopolitical.
Is Sociopolitical Art The Only Form Of Art Deserving Of Greatness?
As stated earlier, art does not have to be political or sociopolitical to be declared as art. Art does not have to adhere to any form of ideologue or theory to be certified as art. Thus, in that respect, it is terribly flawed to state that art without sociopolitical connotations loses its significance as art.
If art would have been restricted to the sociopolitical, then we would not have Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa adorning the walls of the Louvre, or have Big Lebowski be deemed as one of the best comedies of all time.
Most forms of art, on a very deep level, may have roots in the sociopolitical, however, the very cause of that art existing does not have to be for the same. It is much more than a political tool, it is a lifeline.
Art is beautiful, and it is limitless.
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