Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Etymology of Art

What is art? Today, I decided to acquaint myself better with this beautiful and concise word. I have previously defined it for myself as an expression of emotions but to really understand what art is, it would be helpful to know the history of the word itself. A good dictionary definition and encyclopedic knowledge would prove useful, as well.

In my brief examination of this tiny word, I found it most interesting, that in its' broadest sense, art is any skill gained by mankind through learning or practice. Within this definition, all things pursued by humans are art. I like the way my off-line Oxford defines art- a "human skill or workmanship as opposed to the work of nature." In our times, art has been narrowed to refer primarily to creative skill while technically art is a more generic term.(By the way, the etymology of 'technically' is from another Greek word, techne, which also means art!)

To name just a few artistic endeavors, think of:
a father who has learned how to discipline and train his children.
a girl who learned a new language so well that she can translate her thoughts fluidly to others.
a woman who has learned compassion through her own life experience.
a man who is eager to share what he has learned to others with honest generosity.
the mothers who have learned to enjoy the beauty of each day with their children.
the man who has learned to love again.
the woman who has learned confidence.
the girl who learned how to be a best friend.

You all make art look so easy.


k8 said...

what about the art of not screaming at your whiny children?? i need to take that class.

Carol said...

That would definitely be an art as well.

zeb said...

metal sculpture

Carol said...

Yes, it is sculpture of course especially after struggling so hard to learn the craft.

moira said...

Oh, bravo! Lovely post.

cuz said...

Art is spirit. Without art, there is no life.

Carol said...

Thanks for your comments.Bravo to you too.

CS said...

And don't forget blogging. That's gotta be an art! :)

Carol said...

Anything you do it with all your heart is art.