art

Why do people insist on limiting art? The definition of art: the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination . . . Stop right there! No further delineation is necessary. Anything more limits art in all its forms.

Just a bit of personal history here. I was once in a conversation with a group of women. One was a “painter.” The others dabbled in what is often referred to as “crafts.” The discussion was about starting an artist support group. Long story short . . . Ms. Painter announced I won’t fit in since I was not an artist as all I did was write. Seriously? Who was she to judge writing thus? It was also obvious she considered “crafting” to be an inferior form of art to her own. Unfortunately, sometimes there is an elitism about art.

It hurt my feelings and it made me a little angry. It also made me think. What is art, really? Is the person that grows a beautiful garden or cooks a perfect soufflé or crafts an exquisite piece of jewelry any less an artist than a watercolorist or sculptor? How about the screenwriters, camera men and women, stunt crew, special effects teams, film editors or director on a movie? Are they any less artistic than the actors? Is the maker of a musical instrument less inventive than the individual that plays that instrument?

I have been privileged to know some highly creative people in my life (many from the blogosphere) . . . some with very unusual artist output. I knew a brick mason by trade that did amazing work restoring historic buildings. He even crafted a gargoyle one time as the original could not be saved. I dated a chef whose creations delighted the palate as well as the eye being literally art on a plate. You almost felt guilty eating it, but you knew it was going to be so good you couldn’t stop yourself. I knew a mechanic who took simple cooper wire twisting it into charming figures and scenes. Cartoonists! They are double threats both drawing and writing to produce their handiwork.

It doesn’t stop there. Who knew how gorgeous fishing flies could be? Handmade quilts . . . how can they not be art? The elegant code required for all those apps on your phone, can you exclude those programmers for the category of artist? Is there not artistic beauty in architecture? Even before a building is erected, a draftsperson draws the plans. Artist? AND let us not forget the rare and extraordinary allure of any creation by an innocent and uninhibited child. I dare anyone to deny such as art or the child an artist.

Art IS the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination in ALL its forms. I could never list all the art there is in this world or all the people who should be deemed artists, but maybe . . . just maybe . . . I can get one person to look at something they never considered “art” and appreciate there was an artist behind it somewhere.

That’s my art.