What is Art?
Art is defined as the process or the product of elements that are arranged to affect the senses or emotions. It is a way by which we stimulate our senses and emotions in many forms. Most art forms that are recognized by everyone include sculptures, paintings, dance, music, and the like, but now, the definition of art is less stringent than it was before.
With the concept of art being scrutinized under the subjective lens of value judgments, main basis for considering one an art now is the perception of an individual.
The perception of something whether attractive or repulsive is colored by experience and need not be the pursuit of the aesthetic. Eating, though not always considered as art, may be considered as such. With the expanded definition of art to encompass so many things, eating is not excluded. Eating in itself is creative, which is why it can be classified as an art form. With different people having different ways of eating the same food, it is also augmented by the artistry of the food and the experiences that one goes through when in the process of eating.
The act itself is the process by which we stimulate our senses, and in another place, even emotions. While it doesn’t mainly use the conventional eye to perceive the work (in this case, food), the tongue and the taste is the main sense that enables the person to give a value judgment of the work. In many cases where fine dining is concerned, aesthetic appeal is also given a premium, so much so that there are even techniques in arranging the food, called plating. Emotions can also be evoked by eating especially with the cultural background of the cook and the food.
An Asian migrant in France might miss home with a well done dimsum and remember how his mother used to cook for him when he was a kid with the congee he’s eating. Overall, eating is a multi-dimensional experience that is judged through the different senses (taste, aroma and look) and the experiences they evoke from the ones who experience the food. Moreover, these cultural and economic backgrounds influence the way people eat, therefore, giving a different experience.
Such differences include picking which part of the pizza to eat first, picking out individual ingredients of a salad to eat in order, separating the sauce from the food, etc. Eating is the process of judging the taste of a dish, how well it is presented and how it is authentic new or any other impression the food may leave to the one eating, as well as the way people eat based on their culture and economic standing. These processes are the aesthetic experiences of eating that are visual as well as those that go beyond the visual.
These experiences enable the person to judge the food and express their own ways on how to eat them based on their sentiments and tastes, which is the whole point of aesthetics. With the main factor involved in aesthetics being the response and reaction of the person to the food, eating incites such automatic reactions which can range from the food being awesome to being disgusting linked to cultural values. Other factors involved in aesthetic judgment include will and desire, and preference and choice, which are all evoked through the process of eating.