Playing With Sticks
I’m old in years, young at heart,
still a child entertaining myself,
randomly moving Thoughts about-
playing happily with sticks
in the playground of my mind-
sticks like ‘Crafts for a Practical Purpose’,
‘Arts for Aesthetic Pleasures’,
‘Art for Art’s Sake alone’…
seem to overlap, lines get blurry-
a weaving to hang on a wall,
a painting to complement a couch,
a chair never meant to sit on,
a clay pot to admire, not to use,
a song to advertise products to sell,
a drum roll to start a revolution,
a book of writings to pay the rent,
an arrangement of flowers celebrating occasion,
a sculpture to support some weighty books…
When does Fine Art serve Practical Purpose?
Why does Fine Art hold higher Status?
What gives it Value…Provenance-
the record and status of Owners,
the Creator’s location, associations,
personal history, educational foundations,
the Creators artsy story,
their cultural-national identity,
technical skills and accuracy,
originality of style, composition,
trending themes, power to please,
the placement and jargon of Display?
When does Craft become Fine Art too?
We seek and make many kinds of Crafts
judging usefulness, quality, design-
both Functions and Aesthetics of Design.
We deem several Arts Fine-
Human Creative Expressions
that we hold in high esteem
but then judge much what is or isn’t ‘fine’
depending on tastes, yours and mine.
Opinions vary, people invest money,
Subjective-Objective Decisions of Value,
buying or selling, commodity trading,
marketing Creations and Creators-
those still living or profitably dead,
compounding praise and short or long term gains.
Often, Arts and Crafts become Competitions
of Winners and Losers, Victories and Defeats,
a myriad Creative Expressions Valued or Not.
Some people make and buy them just for Fun,
some to be in the presence of Beauty
in whatever form it takes.
Some people thrive on, invest in Ugliness,
a Subjective-Objective Opinion, a Statement
of how they feel and see Life around them,
the makers, the sellers, the buyers-
a Declaration of who they choose to be
in the presence of Ugliness, a Dissonance.
Arts often express and stir Imaginations.
Crafts often inspire, evoke Imagination too.
Both stretch Education beyond mere Knowledge,
beyond Rigid Data of Information
by Sprinkling Stardust on Numbers and Words,
Symbols, Sounds, Physical Actions
merging the Mundane into the Sublime.
Creative Processes enrich Cultures.
Will we let Machines create Everything-
making us the Robots, the Working Consumers
increasingly working for the Machines?
I wonder about such things
while playing with sticks in my mind.
March 8, 2023
Shelley Audrey Wilson