Thread: What is art?
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Old 01-31-2016, 02:23 PM   #40
^it sings^
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 9,708
The expression Art for art's sake comes to mind. Wikipedia has an entry for it that deals mostly with the separation of art from utilitarian function; but, also touches on art for oneself versus for others. A couple of excerpts:


... and Edgar Allan Poe. For example, Poe argues in his essay "The Poetic Principle" (1850):

We have taken it into our heads that to write a poem simply for the poem's sake [...] and to acknowledge such to have been our design, would be to confess ourselves radically wanting in the true poetic dignity and force: but the simple fact is that would we but permit ourselves to look into our own souls we should immediately there discover that under the sun there neither exists nor can exist any work more thoroughly dignified, more supremely noble, than this very poem, this poem per se, this poem which is a poem and nothing more, this poem written solely for the poem's sake.

George Sand wrote in 1872 that L'art pour l'art was an empty phrase, an idle sentence. She asserted that artists had a "duty to find an adequate expression to convey it to as many souls as possible", ensuring that their works were accessible enough to be appreciated.
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