Defining “Art”

A greasy box filled with remnants of pizza lies open on a cement floor.

“…Is that art?” Meagan asked, “Or did they just leave it there?…I’m confused.”

So was I.

After walking along the Thames during dusk, the dark shoebox that is London’s modern art museum left me wondering about the definitions of Art.

Somerset House, an example of classic beauty

I had spent the last three hours walking around the City of London, admiring the ornate palaces next to brick chimneys and Victorian turrets next to gothic-style shops. London’s buildings are classically beautiful and romantic.

Then we went into TATE. I tried so hard to appreciate the exhibits.  I assigned meanings to everything.

“What is that blue tarp?”

“It represents the ocean and the plastic bottles represent the litter.  The final message tells us humankind will suffocate under their own rubbish.  Physically and mentally. It calls us to be detached yet dependent. Obviously.”

“And that one?”

An exhibit at the TATE. photo by Kamilla

So I don’t particularly enjoy modern art.  But as we left the TATE and walked over Millennium Bridge, St. Paul loomed in front of us.  There was something ironically beautiful about leaving a building full of futuristic art and moving toward the dome of St. Paul.

Something old, something new: London connects many eras and styles to create an eclectic city. photo by Kamilla

I think the beauty of London comes from the balance of old and new.  Sure, modern art may not be to my taste, but somehow, London makes it work.

But don’t ask me what the pizza box meant.

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