What is art?

There has always been a lively debate about what is art and what place the arts has in our society. It can get a little confusing, so it may be better to try to keep it simple and just enjoy.

The Arts can be described as a collective of the imaginative and creative use of skill in the creation of aesthetic objects, environments or experiences that can be shared with others.

This broad and nebulous concept includes many creative endeavors. Traditionally, the arts are classified as seven although the list has been expended to nine. These being Architecture, Sculpture, Painting, Music, Poetry, Dance, Theater/Cinema, with the modern non-traditional additions of Photography and Comics.

“Arts” is frequently linked to “Culture” and “Humanities”. Culture includes thought and expression and conversely that influences culture. Humanities is the study of the human condition which includes the fields of Classics, History, Langue ages, Law, Literature, Performing arts, Philosophy, Religion and Visual Arts.

There are often considered 2 general classifications of art; 1) Fine Art: purposely created for pleasure an appreciation includes music, painting, sculpture, literature, drama and dance 2) Practical Arts: are also called useful, functional or manual art since they are created by people for use in their daily lives.

However, that line is often blurred and many don’t feel the need to define art. The mere act of defining or categorizing art, some feel, ┬ácan limit it’s expression or enjoyment.

Art is an activity which spans the globe and encompasses a host of disciplines, as evidenced by the range of words and phrases which have been invented to describe its various forms. Examples of such phrases and forms indclude: Fine Arts, Liberal Arts, Visual Arts, Decorative Arts, Applied Arts, Design, Crafts, Performing Arts and so on.

For our purposes, we propose the following as included in “The Arts”:

  • Painting & Drawing

  • Sculpture & Carving

  • Music

  • Dance

  • Theatre/Film

  • Graphic Design

  • Writing

  • Architecture

  • Wood working

  • Metal work

  • Fiber arts

  • Culinary arts

  • Photography

  • Folk arts

  • Pottery & Ceramics

  • Crafts

We invite you to share with us your vision of what art is!