About Fashion and Art/Artist

I’ve said many times that your work as a sewist and design is that of an artist….hence the sew+artist=sewist that I use so many times to refer to what I do as well as what I teach.

And although this is immensely logical for me, having read a lot on the process and composition of an artist and the artistic-ness that takes place in the creation of a work.  It has always seemed highly logical.  I classify myself as an artist and designer.

But is my work art?  According to this article it isn’t, but designers (and sewists) are.  That’s confusing to me, but the article is worth a read – if for no other reason than to be exposed to the author’s reasoning.  And of course if fashion isn’t art why are there so many museum exhibits, with one particular having been so popular that the museum held the exhibit over 3 more weeks and had lines around the corner to garner entry tickets.

Theoretically if an art venture is in a money-making industry, then it is not art.  Granted fashion and clothing design does have a bottom line and if it isn’t going well, then the artist-in-charge is fired and arrangements are made to make the company make money.  But honestly I see no difference between this and movie-making being an art form or for that manner and other art form – don’t they all seek to make money, and if they aren’t try to rearrange things so that they do?

I frankly get a little confused with folks trying a classify one form of art as such because of some arbitrary qualification but admit the process by which the product is created is artistic – and that the creator himself/herself is an artist, but what they produce through an artistic process by the artist is not art!

In the end she admits that the boundary is very fine between fashion being artistic and money-making.  It’s probably more like none.  But what it definitely shows is how hard it is to classify fashion and in particular if you design and sew your own clothes.

I think sewing is under-going a huge transformation.  Many more of my students come to me to have the freedom to express and create their own looks and to establish their own style through creating what they have in their mind.  For years, it may have appeared that the shopping population of this country was just in line step with designers, store buyers and store clerks, when that hasn’t been the case.  My students are budding artists just waiting for someone to show them the how’s and why’s and they are off and running with all their ideas.

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