About Assignment 2: tips to get you started
This assignment is about beginning to apply your ability to analyse your own aesthetic response to an event of your choice. I highly recommend you choose to attend something that might be out of your immediate arts discipline area; if you are a visual artist, then attend a music concert; if you are a theatre artist, then attend an art exhibition, etc. This will help youâ€˜readâ€™the event as a novice to approximate how non-arts people mightâ€˜take inâ€™an arts event.
Remember, theâ€˜eventâ€™begins way before you walk through the doors to attend. Theâ€˜eventâ€™really begins when you make our choice to attend an event, so you need to keep some journal notes on why you chose the event and what was it that stirred your interest because this is what has drawn you to it in the first place. This is all evidence about the event that you need to keep on hand and add to as you get ready for the event; what you choose to wear, how you scaffold the event with a meal or meeting friends will also add (or subtract) from yourâ€˜readâ€™of the event, so pay close attention to the lead up to and the moving away from the event your attend as it all adds to your aesthetic intake of the experience.
You may want to think about Dantoâ€™s discussion about how we frame art into variousâ€˜artworldsâ€™. You may wish to consider this as part of your attending toâ€˜an eventâ€™as part of your aesthetic response in assignment 2. The location of the art/event inside a constructedâ€˜artworldâ€™may elevate or ignore certain art objectsâ€“what are the gatekeeping systems imbedded in your event? How does the eventâ€˜frameâ€™the artworld and how/what is the aesthetic experience of this for youâ€“either before or after you acknowledge the “artworld” you find yourself in?
Unlike your first assignment which was really about surveying what other artists and theorists suggest about the aesthetics of your chosen discipline, Assignment 2 puts you squarely in the middle of the experience and asks you to articulate the varying emotions and reasons you â€˜wrestleâ€™ with whilst attending the arts event. You should write in first person, but most importantly, you need to converse with the various aspects of any of the readings from this course. In fact, it might serve you well to also read ahead into module 5 in regard to ethics, reason and feeling in our aesthetic understandings. You may find some very helpful advice in these readings as well as the material below on theâ€˜abjectâ€™ â€“ we are ALSO aesthetically affected by things that are arresting and sometimes abhorrent, not just by things that might be considered â€˜beautifulâ€™.
Assignment 2 is an analysis assignment and not just a retelling of your arts experienceâ€“you MUST engage fully with as many aspects of the readings as possible in order to help you broaden your understanding of how an arts event ushers or hinders aesthetic experience. A critical evaluation is what this paper is ultimately aiming for, so make sure you are more than aware of the context of how the art is prepared and presented for public consumption.