05 December 2009

Dickie, a disappointment?

I was really excited to read Dickie's explanation of who is entitled to belong in the artworld, but after reading, I was so disappointed and frustrated. I thought that some answers, or maybe just deeper insight, was going to finally surface, but once again, I was left with more questions than answers.
I found that Dickie’s discussion of who belonged in the artworld was quite inclusive. In the book, Dickie first lists: “artists (painters, writers, composers), producers, museum directors, museum-goers, theater-goers, reporters for newspapers, critics for publications of all sorts, art historians, art theorists, philosophers of art, and others.”
I feel as if this list of the worthy people of the art world was a cop-out. It’s as if he didn’t want to offend anyone or leave any of his friends out of consideration. I agree with most, but have a problem with museum-goers, theater-goers, reporters, the inclusion of “all sorts” after critics, and how Dickie slipped in “others” at the end. Sure most museum and theater enthusiasts might be informed enough to be included into the artworld, but I’m not sure all of them belong, at least when you’re thinking of the elite artworld Danto described.
Although Dickie goes on and describes that a theatre-goer must have a broad knowledge and understanding of theatre, I still feel as if all that he listed is too broad. He then goes on to include that “every member who sees himself as a member of the artworld” shall be. There is, understandably, not a governing body that decides who does and does not belong, but Dickie, in my opinion, did not spell out any concrete guidelines for us to consider. He basically includes everyone if they feel so inclined or so worthy of such membership.

1) It seems as if Dickie's article has no concrete answers. Was Dickie aiming to please?

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