Wednesday, 26 November 2008

If it's art, it's not for everybody...

...and if it's for everybody, it's not art. Discuss. An essay on that question got me into Music College (well, and my outstanding voice of course, lol!). But recently, I've been reminded of that quote. My beads are seeming to take a turn that takes them beyond wearability or practicality, and I am trying to reign them back in. The problem with sculptural beads is that they are neither fish nor fowl - not the type of bead you can easily string to a bracelet and wear within the hour, not 'sculpture', art that has no duties to fulfil other than that its owner places on it (I was going to say 'look pleasing to the eye', which gives away my very traditional views on art, so in what I'm writing, I fully acknowledge that artists do much more with their sculptures - challenge, dare, shock, encourage, fight........don't mind me. I just make roses.)

So, when I'm at the torch, and I follow the flow of the glass, start tweaking, twisting, crinkling, until the bead looks more like a lump of seaweed than something made of glass, what is it I actually do? Do I simply challenge myself to get more out of the medium? Am I playing sillybuggers, allowing my sense for the whimsical to run away with me? Am I wasting my time, creating beads that no person in their right mind would attempt to work into jewellery? Or am I (heaven forbid!) going down a route that leads to 'art'? And if Schoenberg (Arnold, 20th century composer....he of 'if it's art, it's not for everybody...' fame) is right, what does it mean when you're starting to produce beads only a very small minority will like, before you even have what could be labelled a 'customer base'. And does it matter?

Don't worry, the roses won't go away. And the lace sets won't either. And I'd show you the seaweed, but I thought I was getting poncy, so I chucked it in the water jar. I'll show you a rose instead, eh?


  1. Sabine your thoughts are deep this time of the morning but I love reading your musings, food for thought!!

  2. Lol, thanks should see the posts I delete before publishing them... :o)

  3. Sabine, don't you EVER dare make anything that everybody will like. I've gone down that path with my jewellery and I hated it. And guess what, my customers hated it too. Just make what's in the glass and in your heart. The people will follow. And this is exactly the reason why I'm not a very good business woman (but hey, I love what I do!)

    The roses though are amazing. Who says they can't be made into jewellery? I said to you elsewhere that I can't work them into my jewellery but that is because I don't have the right skills yet. But I can SEE them as finished pieces each and every one of them. Aaaargh, it's so frustrating!

    I think you've gone down a very creative and beautiful path. The rest of us will just have to keep up!

  4. I think Mary has said it all really! Your flowers are beautiful and yes I believe they are art but they can still be made into jewellery and thats what make it a challenge ~ for me anyway. The ideas are there I just have to work out the means!! If you get my drift?

  5. Aww, thank you both - I didn't post it to get compliments, honest ;o) I've started a page on my site to give some ideas about using the roses, hopefully, I'll be adding to that page on and off, making it a growing resource...the challenges never stop, and that's a good thing!