Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Can something be a great work of art and be disturbing or ugly or disgusting?

What are your first reactions?

Is this art?

How does this support and/or "art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth"?


  1. Jose

    In all honesty, I was more shocked by the fact that the law had become involved rather than that live fish were being mutilated in the name of art. I was a bit disturbed at the bit of students killing chickens and cats for school-related art, but this does reveal a lot about myself, and maybe even others. I viewed fish as being rather useless so didn’t react too much to them, but when chickens (who will not be eaten) and cats are killed, I had a stronger emotional reaction. To me, this is art because it caused a reaction and gave birth to many ideas, debates, and feelings regarding the art piece. I think that no matter how disturbing the piece was, it would be unfair to use its morbid nature against it and not call it art. This reminds me a lot of one of my favorite performance artists, Marina Abramovic, and her installation Rhythm 0, in which she laid out 74 items which the public were free to use against her. It ended with moderate harm to her, both physically and mentally, but it was critically acclaimed piece of performance art. This supports the idea of art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth because it did not have a set objective, but revealed a lot about human nature and our ideas of what is right and wrong.

  2. Djellza R.

    When I first saw this image, I thought that it was just an image of a few blenders on sale, probably on a store shelf. As I began to further analyze the image, I noticed that there was a goldfish in each blender. This puzzled me since I was confused as to why the goldfish were in the blenders and I was surprised that I had not noticed them initially.
    I definitely think that this image is art since it appealed to my emotions and senses. It made me think and wonder what is going on in the image, and, despite the title of the activity being, "Can something be a great work of art and be disturbing or ugly or disgusting?" I found it quite beautiful.
    Initially, I was unable to determine how this image supports the idea of "art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth;" it didn't make much sense to me. After thinking about it, I realized that this image does support this idea since it portrays the truth that appliances such as blenders are theoretically useless. They're nothing but "fishbowls" that, although this is arguable, do a job that isn't really a necessity.

  3. Nya- First reaction:confusion, shock. I don't really understand this form of art. I am having a hard time finding the authors purpose. How does consciousness relate to a goldfish being ground up in a blender? I guess since the author does have a purpose it could be considered art but in regard s to the life of the animal I feel there could have be a less violent or dramatic way to portray it. But then again maybe that is what the artist wanted. Maybe it was supposed to have such an effect or bring such conflict. Even though it is weird it technically is still art. But outside of TOK I wouldn't consider it art. And I definitely wouldn't push the button..

  4. Ya-Marie and charles

    The article was shocking and very hard to choose what side of the argument we agreed with. The artist is measuring the ethics of his audience, but how ethical is the artist for creating a situation that creates the opportunity for an unethical outcome?

    Some people may define it as art because like Longstaff stated in the article that art has no rules, so if people abide by that then they believe that. But we do not think its hart, if you have to harm a living thing in front of everyone to look at, how exactly do you interpret that as art. Everyone has there own understanding of art, and we don't think killing a living thing is considered art. But then you have to bring into context about fashion, how we kill living things and wear them as art/fashion to look good.

    In reality, goldfish are not truly at the mercy of humans with the option to liquidize them in a blender. The art is a lie, but with it the artist comes closer to the truth by portraying how the value of the lives of most animals is ignored, humans depriving the animals of their self-determination for their own novelty

  5. Maxwell
    I most definitely agree with the saying that a great work of art can be disgusting or disturbing. I am disgusted that an artist who claims themselves to be an artist would plight fish in blenders and call art. I don't see this action as art at all to be honest. I don't really understand how it'll connect with the quote, "art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth."

  6. Benjamin 3A
    I was a little surprised at first, reading that a goldfish would be liquefied in this show of artwork. I kinda though it was cool, pinning a person's conscious on the spot and giving them the decision of whether or not to push the button to blend the fish. I would consider it art. "To do battle with your conscious" is an interest topic for the artwork. I don't think it's really animal cruelty. Evaristti said the fish died quickly, plus we eat fish all the time so a little goldfish shouldn't bring up that much controversy. This art is really a lie, as it's pretty straightforward; you come up to the display and decide whether or not to push the button. But it does bring up the controversy about animal cruelty. The artwork and the article brings people to the realization that animal cruelty happens all around the world, but it's for the greater food. It gives us food, so yeah. This display I guess, if the person was there, would tell you if you don't care about the goldfish or if you think the fish has the same value or something with a human being. So it brings us to some kind of truth.

  7. Meng C

    My first reaction to this image was shocking, why would someone put a alive fish in the blender? is he/she just finding a place for them or they are trying to liquefy them? Then I look closer and only see one fish in each blender, I notice, he/she is trying to cook the fish alive. The artist claimed that it is for the purpose of art and his trying to show that fish doesn't know the difference. To an extend, this can be consider as art, because of the meaning behind it. But art shouldn't be created by scarfing others. Although he claim that goldfish are not consider as valuable as humans, but it is still an organism. Goldfishes cant talk, so we can't understand their feeling, but how would we feel if there's a new born baby who cant speak or express their feeling and thoughts either?what makes it reasonable for us to liquefy fish and not humans? Animals are just like human, they can feel just like us, but they just can't express. I think this does support the "art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth", this is a image with a meaning, which means it is a piece of art. This piece of art let us know how cruel humans can be, because there are people who will still press the button and liquefy the fish alive. Are human emotionless toward the opponent because the opponent is is not showing any emotion?

  8. George 3A

    My first reactions to this article is that it is weird for someone to put goldfish into the blender to create art, even though it is art. I feel that this interesting their are laws against cruelty to animals, but it is difficult to justify the law, when the person accused of the crime, stated that they did this for art. When they stated that in Australia it is legal to kill an animal as long as it is relatively painless, and I am questioning this. Why are we allowed to kill them for no reason, as long as the killing was painless, and what is relatively painless. It a gunshot to the head relatively painless, or an injection of a toxic drug relatively painless? Looking the images, it appears to be different, as I never saw this before.

    I think that this is art, as they are creating images, similar to the broken kindle screens displaying images. It is very subjective, in my opinion, as some people do not agree with the killing of animals for any reason, while some support it, as they are just animals, and there are some that just are killing them for art. The art they are creating is a image, that vivid, and can be interpreted into many ways. I think that something could still be art even though it is distributing or ugly, or disgusting, like a painter painting images using blood. It may be disgusting, but they are still conveying their point of view, and perception to art.

    This article supports the quote, "art is a lie that brings us closer to the truth," as the image created by the killing of the goldfish is viewed fairly straightforward, as the goldfish is destroyed by the blade. However, it is a lie, as they are comments that occur by viewing the art of killing the goldfish, and until you talk to the artist, you can never find out the reason why this was done. As you analysis the art you get closer to the reason, why this was done, you are getting closer to the truth.

  9. My first reaction to the image was "cool, are we going to kill fish?wait is that right what if that fish were a kid would it hold the same value". I originally didn't think of it as art but as just fish in a blender. Then I thought the fish was a symbol of us being trapped in our space. Which makes this art to me. It wasn't that after I read the article that I ever considered what it was. I thought to myself can animal cruelty be a form of art. "Why have the people sprayed by PETA paint or blood never used that as an artistic fashion statement. This is an example of art being a lie that brings us closer to the truth. Because it makes us question what the value of art truly is. by killing an animal we test our humanity and our separate values or beliefs.

  10. Juwan/ Shaunakay
    My first reaction was that it seemed interesting and that I wanted to read the article to find out more about the exhibit.
    My first reaction is that I was surprised to see the little goldfish in a blender. It seemed like there were about to be blended from the downward motion by one of the fishes'. It triggered emotional disgust toward the image. Then when I read the article, I understood more that it could indeed be a form of art and that there was nothing seriously wrong with it.
    We believe life is art and everything being as a movie. A movie is based on real life, but it's fiction. Our life is based on our own contradiction, so that's a lie, bringing out the reality. That's how I see this.

  11. Esther Risinger & Jamilet Cordon

    E.R.:At first I was taken back by the diagram but subconsciously I feel like i viewed it as art. To me art is a way in which you express yourself so, in a sense if the artist is expressing himself threw putting fish in blenders then I would have to say that it is art. The question is does that make it right? Another reaction I had was a physical reaction and felt ill to the stomach.

    J.C.: Personally I don't enjoy this form of art.
    I could imagine the fish itself being liquified right in front of my eyes and the more I dwell on the mental picture I too feel ill physically. Beside i find it point less to use death to create art. when art is suppose to create life. Death could be used as art but naturally.

  12. Hyon
    I wasn't really surprised looking at this, I thought it was symbolizing how people would kill fish for food but used live fish. I didn't think that people were actually able to kill the fish by blending them until reading the article. I think this can be an art because of the message or story it tells. Like the article said, it can create lots of controversy to people who defend animal rights. I think it supports the quote by bringing up the fact that people kill animals for food. While some may be shocked about this fact they know that people eat fish. This artwork makes people think more about this.

  13. We weren't neccesarily shocked by the fact that the goldfish were killed. It was more shocking that the artist had to do jail time. The fish isn't really important in this situation. The artist didn't blend the fish, the people chose to blend it. We would have pushed the button, just out of curiosity. This is art because its reflecting a person's inner being. The definition of art from TOK it has an intent and a purpose. It's purpose is that people are actually willing to kill an innocent fish. The fish isn't very significant in our society, they have almost no value. We kill fish and eat them which is why we view them as meaning other than as a source of food. If there was a dog or a cat in this situation, it would be a different story because we put more value on those animals. The goldfish died instantly, therefore it wasn't really cruel. This brings us closer to the truth because it helps us learn about ourselves as humans and our values. Odunayo and Blanca

  14. Paola 3A

    My first reaction to this being art or not was the fact that I saw the goldfish in the blender. I was thinking of the possibility of a person actually wanting to go into an art museum just so that they can push the button and "liquefy" the fish. I was thinking about what it meant to be make it art as an example of the last class discussion because although people may think that an x-ray would not mean anything to anyone but it can mean anything to the artist itself as it portrays his brain and how it appear like after he got beat up. I then thought about how people in other countries who would not care and would be happy because they made food or made something useful out of it.

    I think this is an art because the artist had an intent to where he said, "do battle with their conscience" because I think his purpose was to see how people would react to it and where our mind would be position.

    I think this is proving the quote art being a lie and it brings us closer to the truth because it may scare a person to do something yet it challenges us to how we are.

  15. Edwin R. and Yeni M.
    our first reaction that just by looking at the picture was an advertisment of the blender. but after reading the article our first reaction was that we didnt really precieve blending an inocent goldfish as an art. we were horrified and shocked. we did not percieve this as art because we just dont agree with the killing. I guess it has to do with morals.
    After hiding my(edwin) personal biases and beliefs in a way this is art as it does have a purpose and it did challenge my perceptions and ideologies.

  16. Kolleen
    When I first saw the picture I thought it was funny, then I read that people were allowed to liquify them. After that I thought how sick would someone be to kill a pet with the push of a button. I can understand killing a fish for food, at least the nutrients would help someone else live, but killing a fish that can be used to bring people joy is not art. I don't see how killing something is art. i don't see the reason behind it. Sure people may have different perspectives of the act but where is the purpose? To test our humanity? I never thought you could physically interact with artwork. I only know of mental interactions. This does not resemble a lie to me, at the moment. It is true that you can kill an animal with the push of a button, it is true that you may kill many things if you were allowed.

  17. I agree that something can be a great work of art and be disturbing or ugly or disturbing. My first reaction was that why is there a series of blender in the picture. I didn’t notice the goldfish inside at first glance but when I looked at it can I noticed it but I didn’t understand what a goldfish was doing in the blender and I thought it was beautiful but while reading the article I didn’t consider the blending of goldfish in the blender as an art, in my opinion I thought it was disgusting. But I didn’t see how this has to do with “art being a lie that brings us nearer to the truth”



Thanks for posting!!