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03-07-2005
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i think there is a fine line between 'design' and 'art', as both are about communication. just as religious artwork was sacred for it's aesthetic value, it was also propaganda for the church: the easiest way to communicate an idea in a mostly non literate world. it was today's cinema -- the most effective way to 'reach' people. these artisans were hired for their unique vision, just as designers fit that role today. the artist as we define him today didn't really come about until the 1950's abstract expressionist movement w/ jackson pollack. he introduced the view of art as being a free flow abstracted expression of the individual or 'ego.'

so there are many interpretations for 'art.' but i guess successful art is when it truely respects the audience (yourself, a small cluster of like minded people, or the entire world) -- it is in it's purest sense about communciation: a bridge. i think it is very similar to lucid dreaming.

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03-07-2005
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^ speaking of lucid dreaming, i think michel gondry is very effective at conveying this. it's both abstract and clear -- a very HARD thing to do. check out eternal sunshine and the spotless mind's dream sequences to see how well he achieved this. and his dvd too.

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03-07-2005
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If we have to classify, I guess I think of it where fashion, art, and design are a Ven diagram like this:



So many levels; I think we are talking too complicated a subject to look at a runway photo and label it "art" or "design." Everything overlaps anyway, and don't forget a rose by another name would smell as sweet.

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03-07-2005
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^ i like the ven diagram analogy. nicely put

if you multiply this diagram millions of times over it works as well. just a bunch of floating overlapping dots (particles) atoms making of the sum of the whole

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Last edited by travolta; 03-07-2005 at 07:06 PM.
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03-07-2005
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Jackson Pollack was awesome. At first I'd see his work and think to myself "What the hell is this? It's splattered paint, I did this when I was a kid." But once I saw a video of him doing it, I can now see the rhythym and technique in his style.

Anyway, I've always thought the difference between art and design is the ultimate end product, and whether it is done specifically for commercial purposes or not. Now Travolta went and ruined my perfect vision (it's OK ) and made the point about art being used as a means of communication. But that can be said about music as well, another form of art.

I now think that the difference between art and design is in the eye of the beholder, because you will never really know what the artist or designer was really thinking.

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03-07-2005
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western art / design is very seperate from religion, whereas many eastern cultures art/ design/ life is all rolled into one. take for instance the tea ceremony -- the act in itself is sacred and perceived as art making. it no different than drawing a landscape and using a drawing utensil to 'engage.'
i think all art, when it's really effective, is similar to a spiritual experience.

i was looking at a book on tantra, and the illustrations were striking and bizarre: art, sex, life, death, morals all conveyed in one image. this is folklore imagery which is some of the most potent types of art; conveying insight about the climate and cultural values of the time/ place through a storytelling. in a way it is no different than comic books (essentially story boards for films) which assimilate grand themes into archetypes. it is also easy to grasp.

i think art is put on an unattainable pedestal. for instance, when you visit a museum you are acutely aware you need to be on your best behavoir -- it's like a stuffy dinner party and you don't quite get all the jokes, and you can't spill the wine on the expensive rug. you can't touch anything, and you can't really 'feel' the process aside from being informed by a brief artist statement on a placard. it all seems to contradict the nature of 'art', which is about engaging the senses.

design on the otherhand is viewed w/ as much nonchalance as billboards, and the typography on your toothpaste container. you don't really need to think..that's the whole point of design. it's about very effective communication -- so effective you aren't even aware of how it's affecting you. a lot of design is mundane, but it also has the ability to be more subversive and potent because of this.
as kit said in another thread 'fashion is the opiate of the masses' ...maybe art as we know it is the 'red herring,' and designers are powerful magicians.

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Last edited by travolta; 03-07-2005 at 08:27 PM.
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03-07-2005
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in regards to what i was saying about the difference between eastern and western views on aesthetics...

Quote:
Unlike Western aesthetics which oftentimes compartmentalize aesthetic
experience, seeing it as something we have when we go to a museum or a play
or otherwise distance ourselves from practical life-Suzuki asserts that the
Japanese do not limit aesthetic experience in this way. For the Japanese,
everything has an aesthetic component. As such, the Japanese aesthetic
calls for what we might term an aestheticization of experience

....Thus, in terms of aesthetic usage, thought and language
are justified when they attempt to convey the original aesthetic intuition,
an intuition we are removed from either due to temporal, physical, or
psychical separation. Accordingly, in the case of a haiku, or landscape
painting, the goal is not to invest the scene with layers of symbolic
imagery, but to render the scene in such a manner that it reveals the
original situation's suchness.

http://ccbs.ntu.edu.tw/FULLTEXT/JR-ADM/railey.htm
i also remember reading somewhere how 'art' or the aesthetic experience can also be found in the simple, mundane act of carrying buckets of water from a river. my interpetation of this would be the acute awareness of the moment can transforms it into an 'enlightened' one.

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03-07-2005
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I donít get it, whatís the point to separate art and design?

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04-07-2005
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I've been to those dinners. I felt like such a outcast because I didn't know which fork to use...

Wow, I'll need to print that reply and read it again to soak in a bit.

And "art, sex, life, death, morals"; I can totally see the relation between all. Now I'm interested in reading these books, and not just as sex manuals.

As for what is the point in separation, why not? Keeps us on our toes.

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04-07-2005
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this is a site about the ancient teachings of tantra. btw. it's more about a philosophy than just sex...

http://www.tantra-kundalini.com/

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04-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travolta
the artist as we define him today didn't really come about until the 1950's abstract expressionist movement w/ jackson pollack. .
How we define an "artist" today?

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04-07-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travolta
...the artist as we define him today didn't really come about until the 1950's abstract expressionist movement w/ jackson pollack. he introduced the view of art as being a free flow abstracted expression of the individual or 'ego.'
Agreed... but Pollock didn't really introduce the concept of "artist" as broadly as you seem to indicate. Rather, Pollock brought about a certain type of artist that has persisted to this day, namely the "artist as cowboy" type, meaning the artist who is rough and intense, who purges his inner self onto his artwork. Or, as you said, "a free flow abstracted expression."

But, I don't credit Pollock with reinventing the entire way we look at artists or define them. Take other artists of the same time period, such as Robert Motherwell or, slightly later, Jasper Johns. They were hardly cowboys. Instead, they were intellectuals.

I think that timing has a lot to do with the reinterpretation of the artist and that Pollock was a part of that, including the end of the 2nd world war, the rise of existentialism, and a more sharpened focus on the individual in place of massive, general social terms and trends. I think that this follows too both for DESIGN and for ART (which I think are the same thing anyway). The focus on the individual, and the individual ego (as you mentioned) is simply diversifying itself.

John


Last edited by rach2jlc; 04-07-2005 at 06:15 AM.
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05-07-2005
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^ you are right -- yours is a much more concise post than mine. let me just some up my idea of art/ everything w/ a quote by bjork:

The minute you think that this energy - like what you say, "innovative" - belongs to certain people and not to others, you've got it all wrong. Then you've got some sort of VIP or hierarchy of that energy. That energy belongs to everyone. You can be creative just by driving a taxi but you have a great sense of humor - I consider that very creative. I admire different people that can be in that kind of situation and still just come up with something that never existed before. At the end of the day, that's what creativity is about, coming up with something that never existed before

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05-07-2005
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Great quote, Travolta. I hadn't seen that one from her before, but it was interesting to read it and I agree. Thanks for posting it!

John

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05-07-2005
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hey no prob...copy and pasted off her website she's a pretty inspiring lady.

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