The Art We Make: The Evolution of Art

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James Elkins points out that schools of art used to divide the arts into two categories: fine art and industrial art.

Then the intellectuals expanded the categories to: painting, sculpture, architecture, music and poetry.

From there a quick leap to: performance, video, film, photography, fiber, weaving, silkscreen, ceramics, interior architecture, industrial design, fashion, artists’ books, printmaking, kinetic sculpture, computing, neon, and holography.

To which I would add to James Elkins’s list: Entrepreneurship, customer service, invention, technology, connection, leadership, and a dozen others. These are the new performing arts, the valuable visual arts, the essential personal arts.

Art is no longer about painting and sculpture it is about design, it is about innovation, it is about anything that touches a soul.

Any profession has art in it. How a defense lawyer argues a case in court is art. How an entrepreneur builds a brand is art, how a politician delivers his speech flawlessly during a campaign is art.

The painter in front of a blank canvas. The architect changing the rules of construction. The playwright who makes us cry. The doctor who cares enough to call. The detective who cracks a cold case. The diva with a new interpretation of a classic. The customer service rep who, despite the distance and the rush, makes an honest connection. The entrepreneur who dares to start without permission or authority. The middle manager who transforms the key meeting with a single comment.

How about you? How about your business? Are you creating art? Are you touching souls for the better?

Any work that is performed with precision and touches a soul is art.

You have no place to hide anymore. You are capable of being an artist. It is no longer a domain reserved for bohemians only.

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