"The formalist theory of art asserts that we should focus only on the formal properties of art—the “form” not the “content”. Those formal properties might include, for the visual arts, color, shape, and line, and, for the musical arts, rhythm and harmony. Formalists do not deny that works of art might have content, representation, or narrative-rather, they deny that those things are relevant in our appreciation or understanding of art.”-wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_art
I am not a formalist. However while I would state that I think content is an important aspect of a piece of art, I think that Context is more important than either form or content. Also that form and content add to help create the context. I will define context as ” the numerous set of qualities and events that led a piece of art to exist as it is , (with whatever meaning or lack there of).”
I will state for the record that I used Wiktionary for assistance but found the definition of context not satisfactory for Art Context , and that of course like any rational being that my definition is subject to revision with new data being reviewed.