Sunday, May 8, 2011

Art versus Craft

What's your thought on art versus craft? Does the term art only apply to paintings and drawings, etc.? Does it make a difference if the artist is self taught or does the artist need a formal education in art?

When does jewelry become art? Is it only art if the artist melts down the metal to make the necklace? If the necklace is made of beads, is it art if you make the beads from scratch or is it never art?

The questions are endless when this topic comes up. Is it a fair comment that paintings are art and photography is not? If not, why would someone go up to a photographer at an opening and say, "You shouldn't have won third place. Photography isn't art."

Now, my mother taught me manners enough to know that the speaker had limited social skills to act so crassly, but if people think that only certain media qualify as art, shouldn't we be given a rule book to say what amount of blood, sweat and tears must go into a piece before it's considered art.

And what about weaving. It is only art when you spin the yarn yourself? Or do you have to raise the sheep as well?

I think I have questioned myself into a corner. I just started thinking about the definition of art and the definition of craft. That led to the question of why one is considered higher class than the other.

If any of you have thoughts on this... feel free to comment. I'd love to quiet the discussion going on in my head.


Shakespeare said...

Art comes in any medium (IMO), and is the intuitive melding of elements to create something. And that includes paintings, of course, but also photography, writing, music, everything. Even a musical performance, though the musical score is written prior, involves the use of multiple sources (piano, organ, individual voices, etc.) to create the whole. And no performance--or other kind of art--is exactly like the next.

Art does not have to be from scratch. If it were, would that mean that each singer must spin the wool for her own costume and weave it herself? Please. It isn't the materials one works with that matter, it's what one does with the materials.

Cindy Michaud said...

I think that your craft is writing and when you hit the nail on the head and wow me it is then art. This is truely one of those endless conversations as everyone is the expert. I've decided, for me personally, art, true art, is anything that blows me away, makes me stop and ponder, sends me to new might be a building, a painting, a photo, a poem or a landscape. A craft is anything who's outcome or end result is affected by human input; i.e. production lines are not craft.

Does that help? Well, it works for me today.
What a brain tease....needs coffee for more fleshing out!

Jeff King said...

Art is anything constructed from the creative mind of a person. I’ll be the first person to say there is some very liberal pieces of art out there. (i.e. taking a bucket of paint and tossing it on a blank canvas, but as I have sated it still art.)

Craft: is the conscious effort to get better at the way we create art. It’s the method to the madness if you will, the rules that govern chaos. Craft, is the way we refine our work in the public eye.

Cat Chat With Caren And Cody said...

I agree with Jeff that "Art is anything constructed from the creative mind of a person"....

to me, chefs are artists, hairstylists are artists, writers are artists, musicians are artists, landscapers are artists, photographers are artists......and the "beat goes on".....

Buttons said...

Lou what a great post ART? I have struggled with this one myself. My daughter is an artist she paints and creates beautiful works on canvas and textiles.
I am a amateur photographer and dabble in writing. Am I an artist? good question I do not know.I have always thought that art is an expression of your thoughts and things that no one can see but you and how you would convey it to others. I would like to think of myself as an artist. Interesting post.B