View Poll Results: art is negative

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  • yes

    3 18.75%
  • no

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Thread: do you think art has to be negative? and why

  1. #1
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    Default do you think art has to be negative? and why

    not that I think there's anything wrong with negativity. quite the opposite. I want to collectively punch the faces of all the people in our culture (ie. the people behind CNN) who feel that not offending anyone ever is the greatest virtue and that partisanship and actually arguing opinions are terrible things that should be avoided. so, as paradoxical as it might sound, I think negativity is often a good thing.

    art is in this instance defined as "a creation intended by its creator to be art that puts an entirely new idea/way of thinking/avenue of thought/new facet of an idea etc. into your mind", if that makes sense.

    what brought this on was that I was thinking on how older, successful musicians usually cease to make interesting work, or at least make less interesting work, once they become happy and successful. By contrast, musicians who do not achieve major success ie. Michael Gira of Swans, are able to go on making interesting music into their sixties.

    Also, the more difficult and alienating someone's art is to the masses, the better it is, apparently.

    these are obviously generalizations, but ones that seem to me to be true for the most part.

    Do you think art has to be negative? or is it possible for art to be positive? and back up your reasoning.
    Last edited by postrook; 05-28-2013 at 03:52 AM.

  2. #2
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    I think saying "art has to be ___________" is always wrong.

  3. #3
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    I agree with you in principle, as art is about challenging peoples perceptions about everything. but it seems to me that the serious artists whose works are considered important usually had what would be considered extremely dark ideas to impart. whereas people making "fun" music, pictures, books and so on are not considered to be artists.

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    Art has to be provoctive. Being positive can also achieve that.

    People might argue that art can be everything, but imo it cant be common. If its something common its just craftfull not art.
    That this makes art generally provocative comes from the combination of being uncommon and relevant. This is the same as innovation always being disruptive, to put it into new-age slang terms.
    Its negative towards the status quo. That might just be a good thing.

    In a sense positive/negativ fits, but it is easily misunderstood. Art isn't good or evil, just like any form of change can be evil but doesnt have to be.
    Last edited by Ronin; 05-28-2013 at 06:23 AM.

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  5. #5
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    No, a BIG NO! I personally love the arts.

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    From my understanding, quite a few very talented artists tend to be mentally ill, thus negativity or seemingly negative imagery. Such as major depression, bipolar, schizo, etc. Something about mental illness brings out creativity for some reason. THis isnt a catch all but seems to be the case for quite a few.

    But also something about dark art is more intriguing. Makes me think more about what was goin on with the person more so than someone drawing rolling hills.

    To me everyone is always about the positive. Don't think negative, be happy. Throwing on masks to hide the pain and darkness. Rarely do I hear people talking about the hardships, pain, darkness in their lives, whats actually going on in their heads. It's always some mask talking bout everything being fine, giving a persona of perfection. Its a breath of fresh air, I suppose, to see the real person, the pain and darkness coming out. Kinda a **** you to society to me. Keepin it real.
    Last edited by Rebuzzal; 05-28-2013 at 01:02 PM.
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    it's interesting that you voted "no", then. :]

    reading this thread the morning after, I think what I was really trying to do was challenge the perception that "negativity" is a bad thing. our society pushes on you the idea that you should suck it up, not talk about negative things, and pretend to be happy, because no one wants to be around whiny, negative people, right? you should put a smile on your face and go buy something to cheer you up.

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    Well... Art is certianly getting depressing if they consider this "art".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rebuzzal View Post
    From my understanding, quite a few very talented artists tend to be mentally ill, thus negativity or seemingly negative imagery. Such as major depression, bipolar, schizo, etc. Something about mental illness brings out creativity for some reason.
    I am sure that majorly depressed people or people with schizophrenia have thought deeper about the purpose of life than more "normal" people.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wikipedia
    Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by a breakdown of thought processes and by a deficit of typical emotional responses.[1] Common symptoms include auditory hallucinations, paranoid or bizarre delusions, or disorganized speech and thinking,
    Quote Originally Posted by Beatrix23
    Beatrix23 emotions will only make you play worse.
    Someone who controls there emotions, while also having beliefs in God which atheists consider "delusional" could be categorized as having schizophrenia? Just because someone isn't a hardcore enthusiast of their culture and role in society does not mean that their brain is disfunctional. I happen to shutdown my emotions because I feel they mess with my objectivity, but if someone spends their time trying to provoke a "typical emotional response" and if I respond objectively then I have schizophrenia??? Mental diseases are identified from the reference point of society and I don't think society is omniperfect.

    Why would you even say that art is negative? When I told a close friend that she was contradicting what she told me previously she said I was being resentful. When I told another close friend that the rules he was disappointed in me at for breaking had been well-hidden from me at the time I broke them, and that my first friend was crushing my will by trying to convince me that I was doing something wrong and then when I followed her logic, telling me that my problem was that I was not admitting to what I was doing wrong (having sexual relationships with a third friend, even though I've never touched her in my life) since I agreed with the logic and was therefore hiding a sexual relationship from her... When I explained this to my second friend then he told me I was being NEGATIVE, since he admired the first friend who was accusing me of sexual relationships which I did not do in the first place - regardless of whether my relationship with a third friend was good or bad from the reference point of the first friend.

    If I see artwork that is negative then I am not interested. But when I see artwork about compulsory schooling or environmental degradation or divorce or mistakes or killing or getting fired from work or the zerg I don't necessarily see it as "negative" if it's done in a satirical, humorous, or thoughtful fashion... But apparently my friends see anything sex-related as "negative".

    If artists do art as a hobby, then they are probably doing it for fun, and therefore view their own artwork as "positive".

    TL;DR - Your poll question and your thread title are two different things: Art doesn't HAVE to be ANYTHING... When I read manga I'm reading it for the story and the characters - not to discern whether the art style is positive or negative!

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    On the idea of negative, Pointing out the negatives can help transform into positives, just focusing on positives will only neglect the negatives which will probably do more bad than good. IMO mind you.


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    I think negativity is the easiest direction to take things. Its much easier to make people mad or sad than it is to make them happy or excited, etc.

    I feel like its much more difficult to encompass feelings of positivity, so taking a negative route is the "cheap path" (for lack of a better term). Most everyone is encouraged by something different, so finding a universal positive that everyone can enjoy is very difficult. However, living in the arrangement we do, we all have a general feel for right and wrong. We are raised to believe in universal wrongs, (murder, rape, torture, etc) so its easier to encompass our negative sides.

    I've noticed this with a lot of people. Its amazing how a common hatred can bring a group together, a group that would otherwise probably want nothing to do with each other. The relationships founded on a common dislike are sometimes almost as strong as those founded on similar likes.

    I dunno. I'm just typing now.

  12. #12
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    In art, I think genuine positivity is a lot more powerful than genuine negativity. It's just not as frequent.

    For example, a movie I saw just a couple weeks ago, 50/50. SPOILER The main character has cancer, 50/50 chance of living/dying, etc. I was preparing myself for him to die for the whole movie. It's a great movie, and a great movie wouldn't choose a cheap cop out, like a happy ending, right? But then it's the happiest ending ever. No one dies, everything works out, everyone's happy. But it's just so genuine. The sad tragic ending would have been the cop out in this specific movie, because like, sometimes life is really really good. Nawmean? SPOILER

    I think what I mean is, really good art is mostly negative. But sometimes really good art is positive, and that art is way better than the really good negative art. I'm kinda just rambling now.
    Last edited by $$$; 05-28-2013 at 09:43 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oisterboy View Post
    finding a universal positive that everyone can enjoy is very difficult.
    Just like MMORPG companies don't have to cater towards RTS or FPS fans, and sci-fi book authors do not have to cater towards historical non-fiction fans, artists don't have to find a universal positive that caters to everyone. Pick something interesting and draw it :P And if you find your dislikes are an interesting theme then go with that Or pick something not interesting. If you REALLY want to narrow it down to a very specific form of art, then you could focus on a specific category of art called "visual art" - "the creation of images". And you don't even need a subject in order to make an image. You could take a screenshot of this post, crop out the ads, upload the image, and I'd call that visual art.

    Last edited by Phenoca; 05-28-2013 at 10:32 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by postrook View Post
    it's interesting that you voted "no", then. :]

    reading this thread the morning after, I think what I was really trying to do was challenge the perception that "negativity" is a bad thing. our society pushes on you the idea that you should suck it up, not talk about negative things, and pretend to be happy, because no one wants to be around whiny, negative people, right? you should put a smile on your face and go buy something to cheer you up.
    well, I deal with major depressive episodes so negativity is something I have to talk about or it doesn't go well for me. if you were talking to me...
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheSkald View Post
    I think saying "art has to be ___________" is always wrong.
    this.

    what even is art?

    it can be the entire panoply of human emotion, or not. It can be political, or not. it can be beautiful or ugly... but then those terms are objective and are also not static. so then art is always fluid? well yes, but also no because of the influence that art itself has on art.

    this is an even harder question than "does god exist" and has even more answers.

    also i utterly disagree with your point on musicians. michael ball and cliff richard make less interesting work because they have always been uninteresting (in my opinion of course).

    i challenge you to say bob dylan or van morrison of becoming boring with age. i think there are more exceptions to your rule than you give credit. why should age affect creativity?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darksin View Post
    Well... Art is certianly getting depressing if they consider this "art".


    So deep, it's as if they're crying out to me.

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  17. #17
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    No. There is art that is incredibly uplifting and positive, even transcendent, depending on the listener lol.



    I think people with age for an incredibly large variety of reasons. For the more successful people, I suppose they stop doing interesting things because they've surrounded themselves in an environment so homogeneous with their success so unless they really seek something different, they're not going to 'break out' of that groove maybe. Ultimately I think musicians tend to be... 'themselves', if you know what I mean. So much so that sometimes it leads to stagnation.

    Conversely, success allows certain people the ultimate freedom to do whatever they want... A good example would be the guys from Radiohead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raiyne View Post
    No. There is art that is incredibly uplifting and positive, even transcendent, depending on the listener lol.
    Yay subjectivity! I see art the way I want to see it.

    Also, my favorite description of art: An idea that is put to life.

    There's no need to elaborate further than that.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheSkald View Post
    I think saying "art has to be ___________" is always wrong.
    I seem to have skipped this bit, until Deimos quoted it.

    Objectively this is nonsense going in line with the very meaning of the word.

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  20. #20
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    I vote yes because someone has to. Sheeples!
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  21. #21
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    I'm voting yes just to kill off any of Dizzy's uniqueness.

    That's art yo.

  22. #22
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    Someone please post examples of positive art, how it is positive and why that makes it art.

    Ok, since no one wants to, how about this:
    I promise I won't comment, on whatever answers to my question might be.

    I am really just curious.
    Last edited by Ronin; 06-01-2013 at 10:55 AM.

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  23. #23
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    I had another, semi-related thought.

    probably the biggest problem with the art world is that it is to a fair extent a closed loop. there is a segment of the world that pays attention to this stuff, and a segment that doesn't, and very little in between, so far as I can tell.

    most of the transgressive art being made doesn't make it out of the art scene and to its (presumably) actual intended audience, or at best its message gradually permeates broader society extremely slowly. but the immediate effect is that a lot of this transgressive art ends up being masturbatory, the art community get to pat themselves on the back, and artists fall deeper down the rabbit hole of making art that is even further removed from what the average person (the intended audience for their message) is going to understand. not that it's a bad thing to make complex art, obviously, but only the art crowd are going to get it.

    the internet makes this better and worse. better because it allows ideas to potentially spread more quickly, and worse because there is a lot more disposable junk and just junk out there than there ever has been before, which obscures the interesting stuff. (again, I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with enjoying dumb shit. I like a lot of dumb shit too! but when it's all you are exposed to, and you don't even know about what else is out there, that's a problem imo)

    as to what should be done, no idea. maybe you guys have thoughts on this. I don't think it's even necessarily the art world's fault. art often takes work to appreciate, as opposed to how stuff made for pure entertainment takes almost no effort. business realities and difficulty of securing funding make it hard to get art into the view of most of society.
    Last edited by postrook; 06-01-2013 at 04:11 PM.

  24. #24
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    I think that all of art can't be divided into two polarizing camps (positive and negative). Not all art is set out to achieve a purpose.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin View Post
    Someone please post examples of positive art, how it is positive and why that makes it art.

    Ok, since no one wants to, how about this:
    I promise I won't comment, on whatever answers to my question might be.

    I am really just curious.
    Basically, search for manga that is neither Horror, Mature, Tragedy, nor Ecchi, and you will have what I would call Positive Art. Omg!!!! Some of my favorite mangas got UPDATED!!!

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