I was recently asked
This is a very tricky question, because it takes more than something looking good for it to be considered art. I believe that true art contains some kind of message or idea hidden beneath the aesthetics.
I see aesthetically good looking things everywhere - in the natural and man-made world. Old things look different because the aesthetic style changes from generation to generation. Compare your style to your parent's style.
I see art in things in which teach me something about life. Ordinary things, if you keep an open mind, can communicate lessons to us. Therefore you can only learn from these things if you are willing. If you are open and venerable to having your thinking, morals, and values challenged.
Sometimes, the lesson is that I just need to be grateful for what I have, sometimes it's a reminder that life is amazing, and sometimes the lesson is that life is short and that I need to do what I can with the time that I have.
For example, I recently did a project in Photo Survey where we chose objects to scan on a printer. Out of everything sentimental that I could have scanned, I ended up scanning in a bunch of close pins - household objects which are always used for a purpose. I was enchanted by how these seemingly identical and simple objects were all slightly different. The slight difference gives the clothespins different personalities. Differences are something for us to rejoice in because what makes us different as humans shapes us as people. I have a bad habit of thinking ill of others who seem to dress and act the same as everyone else in their group. To me it seems as if they are surrendering themselves to some else's identity, rather than being who they really are. However, clothespins helped me to realize that not all differences can be noticed upon first glance, and that there may be differences that my eyes aren't tuned to seeing. The point is that I learned from the clothespins because they challenged what I "knew" as identical. It brought my attention to something, it made me think. It became art when it inspired me to wonder, not when it became pretty.
So, to answer your question Joe, there is potential for art in everything but I don't always see it.