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Forums - Gaming Discussion - Do you see games as pieces of art? *potential spoilers*

 

Are games a type of art?

Yes 37 68.52%
 
No 11 20.37%
 
Undecided 5 9.26%
 
Just want to see the results 1 1.85%
 
Total:54
snyps said:
JWeinCom said:

I am calling you dishonest, because you have avoided answering very simple questions and to acknowledge virtually any points, as you have continued to do. Do you still talk in preshakespearean English? If someone asked you who your favorite artist is would you even consider naming a speedrunner under any realistic circumstance? These are simple questions, and the fact that you can't address them is telling and, yup, dishonest.

Yes, the common usage is what I said. Thank you for acknowledging that. If someone's using the common usage that would make sense in the context, and you counter by arguing that another usage would change the answer, you're just being obnoxiously pedantic. If someone faints and calls for a doctor, and you rush up saying "I have a PHD in Political Science" then you're being an asshole because that's clearly not what they meant. Likewise, if you promise your significant other that you'd take them to see some art over the weekend, and then show them a Mega Man 2 speedrun, you're also being an asshole, because that's not what any rational person would mean in that situation. 

And it is absolutely hilarious to have someone who won't acknowledge that words change over centuries telling me I am just ignoring facts. I legitimately laughed out loud, so thank you.

As for "cherrypicking" definitions, I'm confused how I could possibly do that. Weren't you arguing that there was only one usage for a word? Ands that the definitions for artist could be equated? And that definitions don't change? And we had to go to the original meaning? That's why I used the first part, because you were implying that was the true one and only usage. I was using your standard. So, then why would any meaning but the original meaning matter. Unless *gasp* words have multiple meanings, those meanings change over time, and the meanings we were discussing are not equal. Whaddayaknow.

Quite impressive. I might say that you are an artist at self owning. As for "admitting you're right" nope. By your definition it would be, but that is not what the OP seemed to be asking, nor what anyone who has ever asked that question meant. But using the "Because I said so" argument is a bold strategy. Maybe back it up with an actual argument about why your usage makes any sense in this context over the and I'll reconsider. 

So, let's review. If you're honest, then you can answer the questions. They're not hard I promise. Yes or no. 

Do words have multiple potential meanings and usages? 

Have those usages changed over time?

Is the common usage for artist the one that is given as the primary definition on the website you appealed to as an authority for the meaning of words?

By that definition would a gamer not qualify as an artist?

If the answers are yes, which they are if you're being honest, then that validates exactly what I've been saying. If you can't answer simple questions, that pretty much also validates what I've been saying. Fair is fair so I'll answer whatever questions you have. It's very easy when you have a reasonable and consistent position.

Calling people names like dishonest, obnoxious, etc etc (your list of name calling grows every post) doesn’t support your argument.. it just shows how weak it is. I don’t answer redundant questions and I don’t need your validation of my integrity as a reward for doing so.

Art has a definition. We disagree on that definition. I say a visual artist, and a martial artist are both artists. I don’t know how you can twist that so only one is an artist but that’s on you. I thought you would be able to understand that all definitions of art (past and present) tie together.


What shows how strong my argument is, is that you cannot answer simple questions that demonstrate the argument, or respond to or refute any point. Or acknowledge basic things like "Yeah, we don't all speak in fourteenth century English anymore". 

I can say visual artists and martial artists are not both artists based on the common usage of the word artist, because one is engaged in creative expression, and one is generally not. People have long distinguished aesthetic arts from functional arts, and the term artist is overwhelmingly more often used to refer to one engaged in aesthetic/fine arts. I asked you to explain why your usage was more appropriate for this conversation, but, crickets. And that usage does not make sense, because nobody has ever seriously asked "do games require skill to play" but have often asked "are games a worthwhile type of creative expression". 

Nobody called you obnoxious. I said your behavior was obnoxiously pedantic. Likewise, I did not call you dishonest, I said you were being dishonest (the difference is subtle but important), which you have just demonstrated again. Having an honest discussion does entail responding to points being made and answering basic questions. Which you refused to do even before, so let's not pretend it's because I insulted you. Cause that's... you know, dishonest. Remember when I said you'd feign indignation to avoid actually responding? XD It's like I have ESPN or something.

Last edited by JWeinCom - on 16 June 2022

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JWeinCom said:
snyps said:


What shows how strong my argument is, is that you cannot answer simple questions that demonstrate the argument, or respond to or refute any point. Or acknowledge basic things like "Yeah, we don't all speak in fourteenth century English anymore". 

Nobody called you obnoxious. I said your behavior was obnoxiously pedantic. Likewise, I did not call you dishonest, I said you were being dishonest (the difference is subtle but important), which you have just demonstrated again. Having an honest discussion does entail responding to points being made and answering basic questions. Which you refused to do even before, so let's not pretend it's because I insulted you. Cause that's... you know, dishonest. Remember when I said you'd feign indignation to avoid actually responding? XD It's like I have ESPN or something.

Our definitions of dishonest are different as well. Even our definitions of indignation don’t match up. You keep using those words, I do not think it means what you think it means. 



snyps said:
JWeinCom said:


What shows how strong my argument is, is that you cannot answer simple questions that demonstrate the argument, or respond to or refute any point. Or acknowledge basic things like "Yeah, we don't all speak in fourteenth century English anymore". 

Nobody called you obnoxious. I said your behavior was obnoxiously pedantic. Likewise, I did not call you dishonest, I said you were being dishonest (the difference is subtle but important), which you have just demonstrated again. Having an honest discussion does entail responding to points being made and answering basic questions. Which you refused to do even before, so let's not pretend it's because I insulted you. Cause that's... you know, dishonest. Remember when I said you'd feign indignation to avoid actually responding? XD It's like I have ESPN or something.

Our definitions of dishonest are different as well. Even our definitions of indignation don’t match up. You keep using those words, I do not think it means what you think it means. 

I better get a time machine to the 1300s to find out what they mean I guess. Acknowledge the points about the actual topic if you wish. No need to drag this further off topic. 


JWeinCom said:
snyps said:

Our definitions of dishonest are different as well. Even our definitions of indignation don’t match up. You keep using those words, I do not think it means what you think it means. 

I better get a time machine to the 1300s to find out what they mean I guess. Acknowledge the points about the actual topic if you wish. No need to drag this further off topic. 

I’m good, we have to be able to agree on definitions in order to have a conversation. Take care



JWeinCom said:

Good summary. But, again, I think the problem is in conflating the usages. You're using art in more the one way to get all aspects of a game in, and I think you should just be using one definition consistently to answer the question. And it should be the common "fine arts" definition, because that is pretty much what anyone means when they ask if games are art. Otherwise, it's basically an example of someone asking "Do games have worthwhile expressive value" and someone responding "well yeah, because they take skill". It's a non-sequitor.

And the question wouldn't make sense using art as "something requiring skill" because nobody has ever seriously questioned whether games take skill. That is implicit, and part of the reason why they call them games. Yet, throughout history people have every seldom ever called someone very skilled at a game an artist, except in a metaphorical sense. If you asked someone who their favorite artist was and they said Tom Brady, I'm pretty sure you'd be taken aback by that response. The simple fact is that we very rarely use artist to refer to a very skilled person, regardless of whether or not we could.

Of course there is that part about being more centered an using more sucint definitions, as you point we could focus on the "fine arts" and then again i would make a short anlysis about what points are present of fine art definitions, i think i will do it later, but let's not fool ourselves  part of what i pointed out have been the problems that have plagued the classifying of something as art and later as "fine art" for a long time now, and this not only applies to videogames:

"fine art is developed primarily for aesthetics or creative expression"

"The word "fine" does not so much denote the quality of the artwork in question, but the purity of the discipline according to traditional Western European canons. Except in the case of architecture, where a practical utility was accepted, this definition originally excluded the "useful" applied or decorative arts, and the products of what were regarded as crafts. In contemporary practice, these distinctions and restrictions have become essentially meaningless, as the concept or intention of the artist is given primacy, regardless of the means through which this is expressed"

Who decided what passed as fine art? why did they gave a leeway to architecture? why exclude applied or decorative? when even since their conception nowadays people used the fine "pure art" products for other purposes, like the Sacred music, architecture, sculpture and painting produced during several centuries by church orders for spiritual or other purposes, and despite that still are considered on top of several fine art artistic expressions, same for others that were made to represent "things" in accordance with the desires of their contractors and still qualify as "fine art", why despite the decline of the concept of "fine art"  by specialist like George Kubler and others to around 1880-1900,  and by other scholars of art theory by about 1920-1930, there are still people that champion the use of "fine art" and also do it so selectively, while not recognizing the aesthetic intention of other expressions like photography, comic books(or as Will Eisner called it "sequential art"), or older ones like potery or clothing that not necessarily serve a utilitarian purpose, or not eurocentric ones like chinese caligraphy, the carvings/engravings several cultures of the world did,  traditional tatooings of piercings that in some cultures served tribal or ritualistic purposes , but now are done only for the "love to the art" and others.

I get your point, but that's why I say there are still lots to take in consideration and why i also think sometimes we should broaden the definitions or revise them to see if we aren't just being over restrictive to certain expressions while giving free pass to others.



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foxmccloud64 said:

JWeinCom said:

Good summary. But, again, I think the problem is in conflating the usages. You're using art in more the one way to get all aspects of a game in, and I think you should just be using one definition consistently to answer the question. And it should be the common "fine arts" definition, because that is pretty much what anyone means when they ask if games are art. Otherwise, it's basically an example of someone asking "Do games have worthwhile expressive value" and someone responding "well yeah, because they take skill". It's a non-sequitor.

And the question wouldn't make sense using art as "something requiring skill" because nobody has ever seriously questioned whether games take skill. That is implicit, and part of the reason why they call them games. Yet, throughout history people have every seldom ever called someone very skilled at a game an artist, except in a metaphorical sense. If you asked someone who their favorite artist was and they said Tom Brady, I'm pretty sure you'd be taken aback by that response. The simple fact is that we very rarely use artist to refer to a very skilled person, regardless of whether or not we could.

Of course there is that part about being more centered an using more sucint definitions, as you point we could focus on the "fine arts" and then again i would make a short anlysis about what points are present of fine art definitions, i think i will do it later, but let's not fool ourselves  part of what i pointed out have been the problems that have plagued the classifying of something as art and later as "fine art" for a long time now, and this not only applies to videogames:

"fine art is developed primarily for aesthetics or creative expression"

"The word "fine" does not so much denote the quality of the artwork in question, but the purity of the discipline according to traditional Western European canons. Except in the case of architecture, where a practical utility was accepted, this definition originally excluded the "useful" applied or decorative arts, and the products of what were regarded as crafts. In contemporary practice, these distinctions and restrictions have become essentially meaningless, as the concept or intention of the artist is given primacy, regardless of the means through which this is expressed"

Who decided what passed as fine art? why did they gave a leeway to architecture? why exclude applied or decorative? when even since their conception nowadays people used the fine "pure art" products for other purposes, like the Sacred music, architecture, sculpture and painting produced during several centuries by church orders for spiritual or other purposes, and despite that still are considered on top of several fine art artistic expressions, same for others that were made to represent "things" in accordance with the desires of their contractors and still qualify as "fine art", why despite the decline of the concept of "fine art"  by specialist like George Kubler and others to around 1880-1900,  and by other scholars of art theory by about 1920-1930, there are still people that champion the use of "fine art" and also do it so selectively, while not recognizing the aesthetic intention of other expressions like photography, comic books(or as Will Eisner called it "sequential art"), or older ones like potery or clothing that not necessarily serve a utilitarian purpose, or not eurocentric ones like chinese caligraphy, the carvings/engravings several cultures of the world did,  traditional tatooings of piercings that in some cultures served tribal or ritualistic purposes , but now are done only for the "love to the art" and others.

I get your point, but that's why I say there are still lots to take in consideration and why i also think sometimes we should broaden the definitions or revise them to see if we aren't just being over restrictive to certain expressions while giving free pass to others.

I don't necessarily subscribe to the definition of fine arts. I would include some things like comedy, comic books, wrestling, and etc in the category of art that are not traditionally included. But I do agree with the creative expression part. That is the key, and I'm pretty sure that's what 99.9% of people mean when they ask if videogames are art. I think the reason fine arts are defined as those that are purely aesthetic is to isolate that creative expression. 

Pretty much no art is ever purely produced for creative expression, but video games require functionality in a way that the other mediums really don't. Even architecture has less functionality required, because typically, based on my understanding, making a building that stands up is pretty simple and what the building looks like is then completely up to the architect. With games, you have to worry a lot about players being able to actually play it, and enjoy the gameplay systems, and I think with a lot of games that is more of a focus than telling a story or creating the visuals etc. I don't know if that disqualifies games as art, but it makes me question it with a lot of games. Like, Undertale I'm pretty comfortable in calling art, but Mario Kart I'm not so sure.



The problem with a broad definition of art is everything becomes art. When I do scanning electron microscopy of structures.... if I want it to look pleasing to the eye, suddenly my chemical analysis is art.....  

I still say games aren't art. The primary focus is playing not visual appeal.  Same with my SEM, primary isn't the visuals, but analysis.  



Chrkeller said:

The problem with a broad definition of art is everything becomes art. When I do scanning electron microscopy of structures.... if I want it to look pleasing to the eye, suddenly my chemical analysis is art.....  

I still say games aren't art. The primary focus is playing not visual appeal.  Same with my SEM, primary isn't the visuals, but analysis.  

Granted, literature and music aren't made to be pleasing to the eye, but are arts nonetheless. The are paintings that are anything pleasing to see either. I think the question is the less about being aesthetic pleasing, and more about being evocative. If it's intentionally emotionally evocative, something that can't be appreciated in a completely practical way, then maybe it can be considered art

For instance, I consider gastronomy arts. It's a mixing of design (because it involves engineering things in a clever and creative way) and arts (because it can be a place for free expression and evocative reaction to people who eats the food). The purpose of food is 100% practical, which is to be eat, while gastronomy on itself can be an art 



Chrkeller said:

The problem with a broad definition of art is everything becomes art. When I do scanning electron microscopy of structures.... if I want it to look pleasing to the eye, suddenly my chemical analysis is art.....  

I still say games aren't art. The primary focus is playing not visual appeal.  Same with my SEM, primary isn't the visuals, but analysis.  

Music is also art and it isn't visual.



Kakadu18 said:
Chrkeller said:

The problem with a broad definition of art is everything becomes art. When I do scanning electron microscopy of structures.... if I want it to look pleasing to the eye, suddenly my chemical analysis is art.....  

I still say games aren't art. The primary focus is playing not visual appeal.  Same with my SEM, primary isn't the visuals, but analysis.  

Music is also art and it isn't visual.

And this is still where I disagree.  My wife studied art at university....  want to guess how many music classes so took?  None.  Music is a different field.  Art is so broad at this point we might as well consider gym shoes art, given they have visual appeal.....  which is fine if that is how people feel.  I just don't.  Art is art.  Music is music.  Architecture is architecture.