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Art's Biggest Questionsep1
What is art?
Dr. James FoxDr. James FoxHD, subtitles, Q&ATranscript53m
Art is an essential part of what it means to be human. But what is art? When did we start creating it? And why do we still need it?
Humans have been making paintings and sculptures for thousands of years, but for most people the concept of ‘Art' remains deeply mysterious. In this brand new series, art historian James Fox aims to clear up those mysteries.

In his first talk in the series, James will be answering the most fundamental question of all: what is art?

Taking us on a journey from prehistoric cave painting to the contemporary art scene, James will explore some of the masterpieces of world art and dive deep into the history of philosophy to tackle a series of related questions: When did we start making art? Why do we make it? Can art be anything? Can anything be art? And if so, who gets to decide what is and isn’t art? These questions have never been more relevant than today, when so much art doesn’t seem to be art at all.

James is an art historian at the University of Cambridge, as well as a curator, award-winning broadcaster and the best-selling author of The World According To Colour.

Talk chapters:

3.53 - Natural art from 3 million years ago

8.14 - 19th century understanding of art

12.13 - Art in the 20th century

14.04 - An 'open concept'

18.28 - The functionalist approach

24.17 - The institutionalist approach

28.54 - What question should we be asking?

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HD, subtitles, Q&ATranscript

Art's Biggest Questions

Join our 4-part series as we explore the world of art with Cambridge Art Historian & Broadcaster, Dr James Fox.

4 talks
Interactive Q&A
Series guide

Top audience questions
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Do you think that what once was art can also regress and not be considered art any longer?
10 votes
is Banksy considered Art? or is it really glorified graffitti?
9 votes

Thank you for a brilliant talk. You have given me so much to think about. Can't wait for the next talk.EJ
Read all members reviews(4)

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