Evaluating Successful Art in a Global Pluralistic Artworld
This chapter states that criteria for art evaluation today is particular to the judging community. Since it is the arbitrating community that extends its own history and fosters its own narrative, it also propagates the rules of engagement for any artifact that relates to the community’s guiding narrative. A person’s experiences are grafted into a community’s guiding narrative through what Paul Ricoeur calls “emplotment.” Experiences are essentially emplotted into a greater narrative, and this emplotment gives the experience both context and meaning. These experiences can be understood and later judged through hermeneutical methods. This chapter argues that art in a narrative-hermeneutical theory of art is subjected to formal, historical, presentational, and social impact analyses. These hermeneutical methods are universal for classifying, understanding, and evaluating artworks on their own narrative terms.