When I started thinking how I wanted to write about the Couture collections for 2014 I found my train off on a tangent. I began an internal discussion with myself about the difference between Artists and Designers. It started off simply enough when I had my broad characterizations of both: Designers tend to be nostalgic, perhaps because creative types are often sensitive. Whereas artists live in the moment as they tend to be more about action and less analytical. But that’s not really true. Then I thought, well there are “artists” and there are artists. It’s at this point where I realized that I could devote and entire thesis to the idea of what makes a true artist.
I have always envied those I would refer to as true artists for their unrelenting passion to work. But when I consider that it’s like an addiction to working at the cost of all else, it no longer seems that enviable. Personal relationships often fail because they cannot compete with the high of creating (or purging). From that point of view it really seems more of a curse – to be the one who has been chosen by nature to sacrifice their happiness in order to elevate the thinking of mankind. Is this the purpose of art? That those who are given these unique perspectives can use their chosen medium to enlighten the rest of us? To open us up to not necessarily new ideas but more abstract ideas and definitely unconventional. I’m sure you can think of a true artist if you consider one who has done work that has changed our cultures thinking and shifted our beliefs. So then do we include revolutionaries? Political figures like Gandhi and inventors like Tesla? Were they artists – were they true artists?
It gets so broad that the discussion can get out of hand very easily, so I prefer to stick to the media artists. Painters, musicians, filmmakers and designers. The latter of which was where this all began. What is the difference between the artist and the designer? Aside from the first thoughts above about their tendencies, I feel that the designer tries to create livable work that is relevant. Designers can create a world of their own through their work where the outsider is invited in. An Artist isn’t creating a world as much as they are compelled to express their reality. They probably don’t exist in the same world as the rest of us therefore often feeling misunderstood and alienated. Artists do not seem interested (or even have the choice) to be anything other than what they are. I imagine the artist being less comfortable in the confines of a business – especially fashion where it’s run by cooperate backers. I suspect that the artists in fashion are extremely tortured by this irreconcilable paradox. It’s therefore more desirable to be the designer who can create and be expressive without being plagued by a feeling of forced conformity.
Jesus, all of this because I was wondering how to introduce the couture collections. An introduction to couture that mentions Gandhi… In order to keep this little blog of ours nice and tidy I have decided to refrain from including this – whatever it is – from the Fashion Review. You’re welcome. I’d love to get some discussion going though if anyone has any responses? In the meantime I’m going to go have a drink!