From Big Think: What’s the differ­ence between a Jackson Pollock painting and a finger-painting? Why is “The Magic Flute” so enduring, while other clas­sical compo­si­tions have been forgotten? Is “I know it when I see it” as close as we’ll get to defining what we mean by “great art”?

These are the ques­tions Leon Botstein, the dean of Bard College, raises in his Floating Univer­sity lecture, Art Now: Aesthetics Across Music, Painting, and Culture. He illus­trates his own perspec­tive with a story about Mozart and his student, Thomas Atwood, a mediocre musi­cian. · Go to Why Mozart rocks so hard: Artistic genius explained →