Recommend
3 
 Thumb up
 Hide
43 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

BoardGameGeek» Forums » Everything Else » Religion, Sex, and Politics

Subject: Art...or porn? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
United States
Montana
flag msg tools
Avatar
Okay, I've noticed a distinct lack of sex in this forum lately, so here's a little question I've been pondering: what, in you opinion, is the difference between art and porn? It's a discussion I've been interested in for a while, especially as now, in our modern enlightened age (some would disagree with this) artists are free to paint, draw, or photographs things which would in the past have been considered obscene and pornographic. I'm specifically thinking of artists like John Currin, Bettina Rheims, and Araki, among others. I won't post examples here, as I'm unfamiliar with BGG's policy on this kind of subject matter, but feel free to Google this artists and see what you think: art or porn?

I suppose the root of this whole question lies in the individuals idea of the very definition of art itself, so feel free to bring this into the conversation as well.

~Euen

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The problem with having a conversation on this matter, is the simple fact that if you take porn out of the equation, art is already such a subjective matter to begin with. What is art to one person is a pile of shit to another. And sometimes an actual pile of shit is art to another person. I'll let you look that one up yourself as well.

So before you can even decide whether something is art or porn, you have to first decide what is art, and since you will never come to a universal opinion on what art is, you sure as hell could never come to a universal opinion on whether something is art or porn.

11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dan Schaeffer
United States
Unspecified
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
"Obscene" and "pornographic" are not synonyms. Some pornographic things are obscene; some non-pornographic things are obscene as well; and some pornographic things are not obscene. I tend to think of "pornography" as something objectively defined, whereas "obscenity" has a culturally and personally subjective definition. The Miller test for what is unprotectable under the First Amendment works pretty well for me:

1. The average person, applying local community standards, looking at the work in its entirety, appeals to the prurient interest.

2. The work must describe or depict, in an obviously offensive way, sexual conduct, or excretory functions.

3. The work as a whole must lack "serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific values".

Since community standards change over time, things that would have been suitable for prohibition in past eras may not be now. Things that would be considered obscene in one culture are not necessarily viewed the same way in another. Despite the cries of "moral relativism" that often come up in regard to that point, it's hard to find a whole lot that is universally regarded as obscene/unacceptable, and even harder to find anything that is eternally so regarded.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Montana
flag msg tools
Avatar
Still, I think it's a worthy discussion, as its always a good idea for people to share their viewpoints, even if no consensus is reached. Heck, we could all even learn something new or have our minds changed by the arguments of others. That's happened to me many times here on BGG.

~Euen
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
☆ ✧ ☆ ✧ ☆
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
Looking at these stars suddenly dwarfed my own troubles and all the gravities of terrestrial life. I thought of their unfathomable distance, and the slow inevitable drift of their movements out of the unknown past into the unknown future. H.G. Wells
badge
Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect. Chief Seattle
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I jerk off to porn, not art.
12 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
braveheart101 wrote:
Still, I think it's a worthy discussion, as its always a good idea for people to share their viewpoints, even if no consensus is reached. Heck, we could all even learn something new or have our minds changed by the arguments of others. That's happened to me many times here on BGG.

~Euen


True, and I was not trying to dissuade this conversation from being had, simply stating that what you would end up having is every single person with a differing opinion.

For me personally, I think you could consider any form nudity art until it starts involving acts of sexuality where the the genitalia are shown in a graphic manner.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Montana
flag msg tools
Avatar
frumpish wrote:
I jerk off to porn, not art.


And yet, a lot of what is hailed as art these days could easily be seen, out of the context of an art gallery, as something to be jerked off to. If you've ever seen Bettina Rheims' photographs, especially of Olga Rodvina, you'd know what I mean.

~Euen

P.S. And yes, I realize that this was a tongue in cheek post, and yes, I laughed.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Lynette
United States
Richland
Washington
flag msg tools
Yep, I am a girl Scientist. Come for the breasts; Stay for the brains!
badge
For as long as I shall live I will testify to love; I'll be a witness in the silences when words are not enough.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For me personally the difference is how it moves me. If it takes my breath away, or I can see how it might touch others even if it does nothing for me personally, in a fashion that is not entirely about lust or revulsion than it is art.

Of course that is a purely subjective standard and I know that but there you go.

Interestingly enough... a few months back I was going through some old stuff from somebody else and came across a Fireman "Cheesecake" Calender. Being a healthy lusty kind of woman myself I was flipping through it and enjoying the titillation when I came across a picture that was breath taking. While certainly the half naked well chiseled male was part of the framing... honestly the picture had this beauty that transcended lust and captured something much grander than just hot sweaty male... it illuminated the beauty of fire itself, the horror of its raging out of control and the danger in the battle to keep fire tamed as a tool rather than raging as force of destruction. It captured the essence and innate nobility of these men who live a life of service to others. It was a work of art, that just happened to be bundled with 11 other pictures of mostly soft core porn.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bat Profile
United States
Sandworms USA
Plateau of Leng
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
who says it cant be both?
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
R. Frazier
United States
West Sacramento
California
flag msg tools
A man learns little by little in battle. Take this battle experience and become a man who can’t be beaten
badge
This flag says we will fight until only our bones are left.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I think that porn is a subset of art. I would say that all porn is some form of art, it might just be poor or unimaginative art.

There's always some degree of creativity occurring, either in the performance or in the selection of images to present or some such, which really I think qualifies it to become art.

Whether porn is often "high" or "respectable" art, well, that will probably depend on your taste regarding art.

In a world in which "piss christ" is art, I think a playboy centerfold is probably also art.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bat Profile
United States
Sandworms USA
Plateau of Leng
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
rylfrazier wrote:


In a world in which "piss christ" is art, I think a playboy centerfold is probably also art.



it was presented as art and then validated as art by people arguing about whether it was art or not.

making people uncomfortable with a simple image, that was the art


if someone presents a cheese sandwich as art and no one bothers to discuss it...well there you go

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
R. Frazier
United States
West Sacramento
California
flag msg tools
A man learns little by little in battle. Take this battle experience and become a man who can’t be beaten
badge
This flag says we will fight until only our bones are left.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Altair IV wrote:
rylfrazier wrote:


In a world in which "piss christ" is art, I think a playboy centerfold is probably also art.



it was presented as art and then validated as art by people arguing about whether it was art or not.

making people uncomfortable with a simple image, that was the art


if someone presents a cheese sandwich as art and no one bothers to discuss it...well there you go

A lot of people are uncomfortable with porn. Discussions regarding porn take place daily, accordingly porn = art.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bat Profile
United States
Sandworms USA
Plateau of Leng
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
rylfrazier wrote:
Altair IV wrote:
rylfrazier wrote:


In a world in which "piss christ" is art, I think a playboy centerfold is probably also art.



it was presented as art and then validated as art by people arguing about whether it was art or not.

making people uncomfortable with a simple image, that was the art


if someone presents a cheese sandwich as art and no one bothers to discuss it...well there you go

A lot of people are uncomfortable with porn. Discussions regarding porn take place daily, accordingly porn = art.



there is no reason to say it cant be
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Junior McSpiffy
United States
Riverton
Utah
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
It's only porn if you hide it.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris White
United States
Brooklyn
New York
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I dunno. Ask Gustave Courbet.

(About as NSFW as it gets.)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Montana
flag msg tools
Avatar
traininthedistance wrote:
I dunno. Ask Gustave Courbet.

(About as NSFW as it gets.)


Hah! I was about to make a post about just that painting! I actually think of that one as art. At first glance it's just an amazing detailed, technically brilliant piece of art, but when you see the title ("The Origin of the World") your perception of it, or at the very least mine, totally changes. It makes you think about the subject matter in a wholly new light, and that for me is enough to make it art.

On an unrelated note, it would be very interesting to see what would happen if a gallery decided to have an exhibition of porn without telling their audience until the end of the exhibition. The reactions would be extremely interesting. I'd be very surprised if this hasn't been done before.

~Euen

2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
☆ ✧ ☆ ✧ ☆
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
Looking at these stars suddenly dwarfed my own troubles and all the gravities of terrestrial life. I thought of their unfathomable distance, and the slow inevitable drift of their movements out of the unknown past into the unknown future. H.G. Wells
badge
Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect. Chief Seattle
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I think that intent is an important determinant of art.

If a person puts out a cigarette on the ledge of their window, it's not art.

If Damien Hirst intends to do so as part of a piece, it is.



I'm not going to pretend to know the mind of pornographers. Or that realities of income don't come into play in the art world all the way from street art to DaVinci or Beethoven being commissioned.

But I rather doubt that many pornographers consider what they are creating to be art.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris White
United States
Brooklyn
New York
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
braveheart101 wrote:
traininthedistance wrote:
I dunno. Ask Gustave Courbet.

(About as NSFW as it gets.)


Hah! I was about to make a post about just that painting! I actually think of that one as art. At first glance it's just an amazing detailed, technically brilliant piece of art, but when you see the title ("The Origin of the World") your perception of it, or at the very least mine, totally changes. It makes you think about the subject matter in a wholly new light, and that for me is enough to make it art.

On an unrelated note, it would be very interesting to see what would happen if a gallery decided to have an exhibition of porn without telling their audience until the end of the exhibition. The reactions would be extremely interesting. I'd be very surprised if this hasn't been done before.

~Euen



Yeah, pretty much everyone thinks of L'origine du monde as art, including the museums.

Which really just means that yeah, it's art. There isn't any Platonic form of "art" or "not art" we can reference.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dan Schaeffer
United States
Unspecified
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Alaren wrote:
Pornography primarily exists to aid in the satisfaction of reproductive urges (though, often, not in a successfully reproductive way). On McCloud's view, that's not really art; on Pirsig's view, it's a concession to the biological. Pornography is art that has "sold out" to biological urges. The difference between art and pornography is that art aims at something else.


I'm a fan of Scott McCloud's definition of art, but while pornography is meant to stimulate many of the same physical systems and processes that we use for reproduction, I don't think it exists "to aid in the satisfaction of reproductive urges," so I don't agree that it would necessarily be disqualified as art under McCloud's formulation.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
I jerk off to art, not porn.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Bellevue
NE
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mb
HeinzGuderian wrote:
I jerk off to art, not porn.


If I thought I could get away with it, I'd jerk off on art. Maybe give Mona Lisa a facial or the Girl with a Pearl Earring a pearl necklace.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
R. Frazier
United States
West Sacramento
California
flag msg tools
A man learns little by little in battle. Take this battle experience and become a man who can’t be beaten
badge
This flag says we will fight until only our bones are left.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
frumpish wrote:
I think that intent is an important determinant of art.

If a person puts out a cigarette on the ledge of their window, it's not art.

If Damien Hirst intends to do so as part of a piece, it is.



I'm not going to pretend to know the mind of pornographers. Or that realities of income don't come into play in the art world all the way from street art to DaVinci or Beethoven being commissioned.

But I rather doubt that many pornographers consider what they are creating to be art.


Well, I'm fully aware that many pornographers are utterly despicable human beings with very little but base, crass money making at any expense as their however many artists are too and have been throughout all of history.

A lot of the "fine art" hanging in museums around the world is basically "a portrait of a rich patron or his wife or his mistress". Do we think that the artist was "inspired" when he was working on that piece by anything other than his need to keep the patron happy and keep the money coming in?

My point is not that porn should be elevated to the level of art, it's simply that art at the most basic level is the presentation of a work for viewing by a public which requires some degree of creativity, and I think by that standard pornography qualifies.

I think any strict definition of art that discusses "motivation" or "intent" would let out a lot of what we now consider art. What if the purpose of many ancient greek or roman statues was titillation or aggrandizement of political figures, not creative expression? Is all that classic art now no longer art?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mac Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Well, so I googled and found http://art-or-porn.com/. NSFW!! modest

Imho, the pictures found there are more porn than art even tho some of the pictures do not have nudity and the three pages I browsed had nothing you hadn't seen since the 1950's.

I agree with frumpish.

The intent is part of art.
The idea is part of art.
The emotional response is part of art.

The title "porn" seems to be reserved for art where the intended emotional response is lust.

However, I could also see artwork with the genitalia which is not intended to arouse lust- and perhaps even be anti-lust. So then I'd say even tho it was hard core, it was art more than port.

At the above web side, some pictures clearly intend to objectify the subject- which makes it easier to hold lust towards them.

However- some nudes there seem to be more about the layout and fall on the side of art.

One of my favorite pieces of artwork is entitled "Paint on Canvas" and is, of course, a set of paints glued onto an otherwise white canvas.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Austria
flag msg tools
Avatar
The question of what is art has always interested me. The question of what is porn not so much, because I find it usually quite obvious.

I see some overlap between the two and also a field in between: eroticism. The intention of porn is basically to stimulate sexual activity (masturbation mostly.) Eroticism is similar as it also arouses lust, but it is more aesthetic and often is only part of an artistic work, like erotic scenes in film. And the intent is different, it is meant to please the eye, draw attention, sell a product, etc.

Both pornographic and erotic photography and movies are artistic creations under a broad definition of art (or crafts), but they can usually be easily distinguished from fine arts.

When I look at some pornographic pictures that are tagged as art I keep thinking, come on, just turning a photograph black and white doesn't make it any more artistic laugh

Maybe it's not always clear whether something is art or porn when looking at a single picture, but I think to determine whether something is art one always has to look at the complete work of the artist. The black square by Malèvitx

doesn't look very artistic, by as part of his whole work it is definitely art.

Edit: or the following picture taken from the art-or-porn link above

Whether this is porn or erotic art depends mostly on what the other pictures in the shooting show. If the next thing she does is [insert what you want her to do] then it's probably porn.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Marc P
United States
Seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
badge
Gloomhaven is a great niche game
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This thread took 29 posts to get to a picture! Ain't nobody got time for that!
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.