Imagery in visual arts: Managing the temperament of art criticism

  • C Echeta
  • B Enamhe
Keywords: Art Criticism, Components of Art Objects, Personification of Judgment


Works of art can be described as narratives in shorthand where tangled mass of meaning and relationships are woven ‘seemingly’ inseparably by the instrumentality of a medium. The interpretation of this shorthand and the undoing of the ‘tangled mass of meaning, constitute the great area known as ‘art criticism’. The conservative intervention of personal emotions seems to be a fundamental characteristic of critical artistic judgment. This scenario attempts to invariably endorse the principle where “incorrect rights” and “correct wrongs” are equal to the answer, just as lullabies, in spite of tune differences, still lure babies to sleep. The tap root of emotional personification of judgment seems to continue to threaten the main line objectivity. This paper examines the issue of subjectivity in
interpretation vis-à-vis established principles of objective/impersonal judgment. Art criticisms or judgments establish their bridgeheads from the components of art object. In other words art criticisms ought to only be technically made through the channels provided by the components of an art work or object. Many of these principles are largely overlooked. Comments issuing from group or conference makings give away this subjectivity. The paper encourages the judges to play the game according to the rules.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1596-6232