Friday, August 10, 2012

Is Art A Copy?

In my last post, I discussed the feelings of many artists that to expose themselves on the web is an invitation to be copied. I think of them as Luddites...people afraid of and rejecting new technology. As I continued to consider this thought and the feelings that went with it, I also began to realize that all art is in one way or another a copy...of life. What we see, hear, feel all influences us in ways that are reflected in our art.

Every great art movement had its original basis on what was seen, or felt and often imagined. It was an attempt to express with a picture, sculpture, writing, music what we felt about the world we lived in.

Does anyone remember the French Salon? They rejected every Impressionist painter because they didn't paint to the standards that while once new, exciting and original had become bureaucratic in outlook. The idea of light and fresh, freer strokes on a canvas was anathema to them. Yet, it resonated with the public and one painter after another picked up a brush and helped by the visions of the others created their visions as well. While they were in a genre each of the painters had a different take on this style. And as the style began to evolve, it moved in different directions...expressionism and finally into abstract. Some thought Van Gogh may have killed himself because he had come to an impasse and didn't understand the increasingly abstract nature of his work. Cezanne created more and more abstract paintings that finally led to Braque's "Nude Descending A Staircase" that set the art world on edge.

Everything an artist does, in many ways is a copy. They are often influenced by their surroundings more acutely than the average person. As an example, look at this tray I just is basically a crazy quilt that has been painted on a tray. Is it original? Of course. Is the idea new? Maybe for a tray but for a real quilt, this style has been around 200 years in the world of quilting. Is this a copy? Well, yes and no.

It is though, a way to express myself both in admiration for the quilters art and a chance to use bright colors and design that has not been done before. A careful look at this shows that each fabric was used several times and the patterns remained the same. It is both a delightful piece to look at and is very practical. Sealed in spar varnish you will never have to worry about spills that would ruin often old, ancient fabric. I can easily see this on a quilters wall. It is an homage to their art.

Should I show this online? Absolutely. It is a rare artist that can make a copy that will be like mine. Who knows, I might have started a whole new genre that will explode and take the craft world by storm. My point though is, never hide what you do. You may inspire others to take what you've started to new heights. What they do may inspire you to greater heights as well. Remember, if you want to sell, you will have to show what you do somewhere. The web is one of the possible places that more than a few can see your work.

See this tray on my store. Type in KrugsStudio for this and other original items.

Alan Krug

No comments:

Post a Comment