64 Purposes of All Arts -- Toward a Science of Arts: Using Number and Depth of Purposes Covered to Measure How Great a Work is, to Prescribe the Type and Amount of Art that People (Individuals and Groups) Need to Achieve Their Goals in Life, and to Systematically Compose Works of Art Capable of Greatness
Journal of Policy Studies, Policy Studies Association of Japan, pg. 87, No. 31, 2009
32 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2013
Date Written: March 1, 2009
RESEARCH QUESTIONS -- Lay the foundations for a new Science of Arts: 1. How do we measure how great a work of art is long before history makes its judgement? Can we and how can we predict the greatness of a work of art? 2. How do we specify changes in any existing work of art that actually succeed in increasing its greatness and historic impact? 3. How do we measure the degree to which particular lives lack essential levels of art? What levels of art are essential for healthy good lives? What levels of lack of art lead lives into disarray or suffering? 4. How do we measure the healthiness of the amount, quality, and type of art in a society in terms of its actual delivered care/service to those people? This paper tests a hypothesis -- that if we examine the functions actual works of art perform in actual lives greatly helped or impacted by art -- we find that artworks that deliver more such art functions than others end up being judged by history as “greater”. This somewhat counters past research by Watts, Salganik, and Dodds showing that random chance makes some songs popular and others not but they concentrated on immediate popularity in commercial markets while this paper’s research seeks to lay a foundation for historic long term levels of popularity instead.
METHOD -- Ask suppliers and customers of great art what functions they get/provide with it. 1. Nominate great artists and ask them what functions they produce or get from great artworks. 2. Nominate people as greatly impacted/helped by art and ask them what functions they got from great artworks. 3. Combine results from one and two above and categorize fractionally to produce a fractal concept model of functions of great art experiences/works. 4. Use the model thus produced to test the hypothesis that artworks that deliver more of the functions on that model are judged by history as greater than competing works. This paper presents survey research to inductively define functions shared by many works of art in diverse fields.
THE SAMPLE -- A stratified sample of artists from 63 different arts and a stratified sample of highly effective, educated, or creative people from 63 different parts of society were interviewed, functions that arts delivered to their lives that they mentioned were grouped, groups named, groups grouped, such super-groups named, and so on. The resulting hierarchical model was then regularized by branch factor and principle of ordering to produce what is called a “fractal concept model”, the result of this study, of 64 functions of all arts.
USES OF THE MODEL PRODUCED -- Later research will use this model to: 1) measure the greatness of any particular work of art or art type by how much of how many functions it delivers (is music “greater” in functions produced than painting, say); 2) measure how much of how many of these functions more effective, more educated, and more creative people have than people less so have (to link presence of all or some particular subsets of these functions with greatness of life of persons overall); 3) design greatness into particular works by broadening and deepening the number of such functions produced by encountering the work, 4) guide investment in works of art via choosing ones capable of greatness measured by how much of how many of these functions are produced in those encountering it, 5) guide composition and commercialization of movie scripts by optimizing which functions and how much of how many functions they produce in people encountering them; 6) to measure the “artfulness” or “artlessness” of entire organizations and societies via how little of how many functions they have established in people’s lives.
ULTIMATE GOAL -- The ultimate goal is to produce something like a “science of arts” that finds functions nothing else in society effects in people’s lives as well as particular arts do, relating those functions to what makes lives great, so we ultimately can prescribe arts to fix lives and propel them towards greatness, as well as quantify the cost of centralizations, commercializations, monopolizations, extremizations of arts in modern industrial societies. While it is easy to assert, especially if no effort to confirm with data is made, that there are millions of possible interpretations of any work of art, when actual artists and high performer people are asked what functions arts effect in their lives and work,quite specific, non-infinite results obtain.
RESULTS -- The Beginning Foundations for a new Science of Arts -- A model of the 64 functions basic to all arts (plus two ancillary models developed in process -- one of art creation processes across various arts and another of computational art traits and dynamics) This paper’s research presents a well ordered model of 64 functions that all arts effect, to some extent, and that nothing else in society effects as well as the arts.
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