I love this question. I love it when I hear it. I love it when I ask it. Because if something elicits that question, it has intrinsic value. The work by Argentinian artist Marta Minujin written about in Escape Into Life blog post begged the question. In my opinion, the answer is a resounding YES. I hope you'll take a look at this large tower made from books, read about the cultural connections and meanings and finally, the plans for it's deconstruction when the exhibit is over.
If every piece of art was as deeply thought out as this one, as environmentally conscious in regards to both materials used in the creation as well as spiritually conscious in the universal importance in it being archival, we could all enjoy the question, "Is THAT art?"
Would I feel the same if it had been done in metals or stone, relatively "permanent" for ages to come? I don't think so. Its impermanence is part of the spirituality, or universality, of memory, paths of understanding, and need for connection and at the same time asks, by virtue of its temporality, to be remembered, recalled, carried into the future consciousness.
What do you think?