Can gardening be considered as an art? Thank you.

Well, Kant for one, seemed to ranklandscape gardening very highly, defining it as in essence a kind ofpainting (see section 51 of the Critique of Judgement). Thepoint is that such gardening is about form, order, harmony andrelationships – it is, let us say, akin to abstract painting(although of course Kant couldn't have said this). Certainly, also,gardens can have affective and symbolic power, and they participatein a dialogue with their own tradition. Obviously, for everycriterion I come up with, someone could come up with acounter-example that is widely considered art but lacks this feature;so listing criteria is a risky business. Nevertheless, I'm havingtrouble thinking of a defensible reason why gardening should benecessarily excluded from the domain of art – other than the factthat it is not widely considered to be so by the people (artists,gallery owners, critics) whose job it is to tell us what is art. Andthere's the rub. In the absence of relatively stable traditions thatdefine for us what art is, this task has had to be turned over to theindustry. And, in this arena, gardening doesn't really count –indeed, even painting and sculpture as traditionally practised arerarely found. If an already acknowledged artist created a garden asone of their works, then that would be art, but not because of whatit was, but because of the reputation of the person who did it.

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