For sheer visual stimulation, the sites below are most rewarding. If you encounter some baffling terminology try the ArtLex art dictionary.
How receptive is the American public is to such wondrous images? In its 1993 General Social Survey, NORC included the following questions (with percentages responding to each category):
PERCENT VISITING ART MUSEUM OR GALLERY
BY EDUCATION AND AGE
As can be seen from the right-most column, those with the most education are nearly five times more likely to have visited an art gallery or museum in the past year. From the bottom row, observe that viewership is relatively constant across the adult years until the age of 65. Education appears to have the strongest influence in viewership among those 45 to 64 years of age.
PERCENT AGREEING "MODERN PAINTING IS JUST
A CHILD COULD DO IT" BY EDUCATION AND AGE
Appreciation of modern art is, not surprisingly, also strongly influenced by education. However, among those of 65, respect appears relatively low across all educational levels.
PERCENT AGREEING "ONLY A FEW PEOPLE HAVE
AND ABILITY TO JUDGE EXCELLENCE IN THE ARTS"
|% AGREEING MODERN
JUST SLAPPED ON;
KIDS COULD DO IT
|% AGREEING ONLY FEW
HAVE KNOWLEDGE & ABILITY
TO JUDGE EXCELLENCE
From the total row on the bottom observe that those who had visited
an art museum or gallery in the past year are 15 percentage points less
likely to see modern art being "just slapped on" kids stuff and
14 percentage points less likely to agree that artistic excellence can
only be ascertained by experts. In general, these two differences increase
with decreasing education.
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