Dominic McIver Lopes articulates and defends a 'buck passing theory of art', namely that a work of art is nothing but a work in one of the arts. He argues that none of the theories of art that have dominated philosophy since the 1960s adequately copes with particular puzzle cases of avant-garde art. Whereas these theories have reached a dialectical impasse wherein they reiterate, and cannot resolve, disagreement over the puzzle cases, the buck passing theory
illuminates the radical provocations of avant-garde art, and grounds our empirical inquiries into the arts as well as our practices of appreciation and art criticism. Lopes models the diverse strategies
employed by humanists and social and behavioural scientists who study the different arts. He gives the specificity of each art form a central role in our appreciative endeavours, and stresses the continuity of the arts with similar, non-art activities such as fashion design, sports, and cuisine.