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Sunday Feb 14, 2010

Ends in Themselves

“No matter what further purposes artistic expressions may serve, they are produced and valued for themselves; we linger in them; we neither merely execute them mechanically, as we do automatic expressions, nor hasten through them, our minds fixed upon some future end to be gained by them, as is the case with practical expressions. Both for the artist and the appreciator, they are ends in themselves.”

—from The Principles of Aesthetics by Dewitt H. Parker

But are all artistic expressions created equally? Of course, not. Is it art or cotton candy? Is Muzak Mozart?

If you are taken with a painting, do you know why? Guessing or relying on the ‘expert’ opinions of others is not the aesthetic experience of feeling with your higher emotional intelligence—an endeavor that requires work.

Meaningful appreciation rarely happens overnight.