It is true that successful artists throughout history have operated Ford-type factories in the production of their art. Rodin, Rembrandt, Rubens. Hirst, Koons, Warhol. It is also true that the definition of art remains confused with soap carving & pinstriping. Today, we can & often do confuse craft with art. Everyone is impressed by a well-rendered drawing. Everyone is impressed by a flawless athletic feat. It's like magic. It's its own justification. "I wish I could do that". But art isn't a synonym for technique. There are flawless craftsmen in every industry. All of our flawless commodities don't build themselves. Why are all the factory workers of the world not considered artists? Why aren't all of Rodin's technically adept manual workers considered artists? Most artists dodge their obsessive struggle with craft by passing it off as "art". They usually do this by making objects that suggest some vague-yet-profound meaning. This is easier to do then you might think. Really, they just like to carve soap. & you, the general public, like pretty carved soap. So everyone's happy with this state of affairs. But Rubens wasn't merely a flawess craftsman. Chihuly, on the other hand, is nothing but a flawless craftsman.
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