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What is fine art? (and why you should embrace it more)

What is fine art

If you’re in the dark about what is fine art, you’re not alone. Here’s a hint: It comes in many different forms, not just drawing and painting.

What is fine art?

Definitions can be difficult, no one knows that better than a writer. But I think the biggest thing that defines fine art is the reason for why it was created in the first place. It was made as a means for creative expression.

While some people say that fine art is meant for aesthetic purposes, and it doesn’t include functional items, I would disagree. A hand-made ceramic vase with intricate details, for example, is a beautiful type of art that is not to be ignored simply because it holds flowers.

As for whether fine art is only something that you see, I’d say no. It’s also something that you hear, such as music. Or you might watch it, as with a live or moving display at a museum.

Let’s look at a few artistic forms and the benefits they can bring to your life.

Classical music

Classical music has always been revered for its complexity and skill. People playing instruments at their absolutely best and highest abilities, working together to make captivating music deserves the title of fine art.

Yet there are so many different composers and such a rich history to read up on, that it can scare people away. Feeling overwhelmed, sometimes it seems easier to just avoid trying to learn about the subject altogether.

However, you might be surprised by the joy you get from learning about the inspiring stories of the most famous composers and even trying your own hand at their unique styles.

Here’s one case in point. Bach was someone who composed brilliant classical music during the Baroque era. It was opulent, refined, and always told a story through his music.

Mozart was perhaps the most refined style of all, with incredibly detailed notes and melodies. Beethoven’s music was full of thunder and fire, meanwhile, with moments of great refinement but altogether was an expression of lust and rage.

Art appreciation brings a deeper sense of life

When you learn that a museum exhibit took 20 hours to make, do you look in awe at all of the details? I know I do.

I appreciate the time taken to bring this display to people like me. And if it’s different than anything else that I’ve seen before, like the Mandala Stones from Elspeth McLean, then I am grateful for it opening up my eyes to a new perspective.

If you put yourself into those scenarios with me, you are feeling gratitude in those moments of consuming fine art. And that’s an awesome thing.

You’re unraveling different layers of the artistic pieces of marvels such as artist Emily Carr. It might even be akin to magic.

And how inspiring to look at something fresh and think, “what could I do that might make others look in awe at my own creation?”

Absorb the impression

Impressionist art has always been one of the most fascinating styles out there. That’s because you really do get to see the world through the eyes of the artist.

Still life is full of realism, and it’s almost an exercise in freezing time.

However, the kind of fine art on display at the Park West Gallery will show you the different textures, tones, and even brush strokes the artists used to get the mood they wanted. Yet in the gallery they also have ceramic art made by Piccaso so the use of different materials, not just techniques, is part of fine art.

The gallery also captures various time periods. That makes sense as many fine art pieces come from older spaces in time. 

Modern day buildings

Yes, fine art is all around you! Buildings are one example.

Architecture plays a key role in how cities and even civilizations form. Architecture is part and parcel of fine arts, as it takes incredible skill to bend and shape stone and steel into looking beautiful yet practical.

Take a look at the Venitian Renaissance where ancient Greek and ancient Rome classical buildings were given a new lease of life. This style eventually went on to become Baroque and Rococo

The subjective nature of fine art

Of course, you knew I’d get here, right? Just as you might marvel at a certain item, it might not appeal to your best friend or someone else.

Art appreciation is a very subjective experience.

What means a great deal to someone else might not mean anything at all to you. In that sense, try to learn to look at the things you like and try to understand why.

Doing so can help you understand more about yourself, which is very cool. That means that fine art impacts the person experiencing it.

For example, think about when you heard a certain line of a song and got shivers. Was it the way the music was playing in the background or the actual words that caused that deep connection for you? And why?

Final words on what is fine art

Very rarely do you ever come across something that everyone will like to some degree. That’s a part of the definition of fine art. 

It’s also consumable in many ways, through your senses.

Impressionism has always been a stand out because it connects the viewer with the artists like never before. But amazing architecture perhaps plays the biggest role in daily life regarding fine art influence. 

Finally, fine art is about appreciation. The artists put their hard work and imaginations onto the canvas, yes. But also you can appreciate just how amazing human creativity can be.

8 thoughts on “What is fine art? (and why you should embrace it more)”

  1. You had me at “art.” lol. I minored in fine art so I “wouldn’t get sick of it” when I wanted to do art from the heart, you know. But then I’ve gone through cycles of wanting to be an artist, and yet when I “just do art” I can’t stand it. It needed to have a higher purpose. Incidentally, I’m teaching a mandala art and meditation class this week (ooh, I think you responded to that post!). Is it art? Yes. But is it “fine” art, if it’s created for a “higher purpose?” It’s so interesting the art debate: folk art vs. fine art. I think that if it can evoke thoughts and ponderings, then yes, it’s fine art no matter if it’s on a vase or not. Folk art tends to be the functional kind, but still…I think someone can put a lot of time and attention into painting an object…I dunno.
    Sometimes the art folks get so hung up on labels and really, if it makes us feel good in creating it, shouldn’t that be all that matters? Ah…lovely thought-provoking post. Sending you big hugs and much love and wishes for a wonderful week!

    1. You’re right that it’s easy to get hung up on labels, dear friend. I think that when what we create comes from the heart, it’s art. The mendalas you create are absolutely fine art! And I wish you all the best on the class – let me know how it goes :)

  2. Hi Christy… excellent article and fine art can be found all around us. I love nature and the may aspects of true art which is all around us.

    Creating art that people can appreciate is my goal in the many forms I dabble in. During the initial consult for doing a commission I like to first understand what people are searching for and getting to know them on a personal basis. I find I am better able to design and complete a piece which shows that special side of peoples heart.

    Hugs as always

    1. In many ways nature is a form of live art :) I was just thinking that as I read your comment. Thanks for making time here and you’ve created wonderful art that I’ve seen with my own eyes, Rolly. Hugs

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