Quote Originally Posted by iandavid View Post
I am happy to talk about subjective concepts, but on the condition that the concepts are recognised as such. This generally means that statements about, for example, what fine art means are generally prefaced with something like "In my view..." or "I think..."
Not necessary.

All concepts are subjective. We are always expressing our view on things, what things are in our view.
This explicit "in my view" etc. is only needed if you are afraid that your view might offend someone you don't want to offend. It is a "please don't chop my head off if you don't like what you hear" plea.

And don't fall in the trap of thinking that subjective = without substance, unreal, freely interchangeable.
It's not.
It's about something. Something we all know. Something we share.

Quote Originally Posted by iandavid View Post
The content of the above posts demonstrates that the label "fine art" is so subjective that everybody has their own definition of it. Your definition - "fine art = pretentious craft" - is your subjective view. That is clearly not how the galleries use the term. It is not how art writers generally use the term either. It is your subjective view. Which is fine. But I think you should just say so.
So there is something to talk about!

So let's talk!

Quote Originally Posted by iandavid View Post
And I certainly agree that it is good for everybody to think and talk about art. But, in my experience, the most worthwhile discussions about art generally relate to specific pieces or bodies of work and involve an honest subjective discussion of what the work says/means/represents/etc to those discussing it, how effective it is, whether they like it, etc, and perhaps what the artist intended if that can be known.
"In my view" that is a cop out.
Let's talk about something presumed to be safe, instead of that "slippery concept" the thread is about.
Let's not. Let's not run away because it is difficult. Let's not throw the interesting topic out.

And an unsuccesfull cop out too: do you think that things would be different if we talk about a specific pice or body of work?
The concepts are all the same. Slippery then if they are now.