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Old 03-30-2009, 04:28 PM
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Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . . for the purposes of understanding what a juror looks for in a work when hanging and awarding an exhibit. I know the dictionary definitions of each . . . I am looking for the artistic meaning of these terms with respect to the creative process.

For instance, when painting a landscape, how would these terms come into play while planning and painting? How about a portrait? Or still life?

I bet the answer is so obvious it is about to bite me in the nose . . . but somehow it is not always so evident when I finally see a show after it is hung. Are these things more important than how one handles the medium, how skillfully they draw or paint, or whether the composition is good?

What makes a work original, visionary, and creative?
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Old 03-30-2009, 09:42 PM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

What makes a work original, visionary, and creative?

There is no simple answer to this because it changes from artist to artist. I would also like to add that even armed with a full working knowledge or understanding of what these terms mean in no way guarantees that a given juror will appreciate your work. Juror's have their own preferences and prejudices... and when choosing work for an exhibition they will also often select work with some concept of how the various art pieces will function together. Sometimes this may mean selecting works with a degree of common elements. At other times it may mean intentionally seeking out great contrasts. A quality piece of art can get left out simply because the juror feels there are already too many landscapes, too many paintings that are predominantly green, too many paintings of the same scale, etc...

I might suggest that the answer to what vision, creativity, and originality mean (and all would seem quite similar, if not interchangeable in meaning) relates a great deal to our dialog on Jeremy Lipking. Lipking, it might be argued, has a distinct "vision"... he is clear upon how he wishes his art to look... what he wishes to communicate. He is not bouncing all over the place without a clear unity to his work. He may be quite masterful in his drawing, his handling of paint, and his mastery of certain formal elements. Where he falls short (IMO) is in the realm of creativity/originality. Looking at his work there is little that stands out as being unique to Lipking... so much so that I would question the attribution of many of his works to any number of other artists... even to Sargent or Zorn.

Creativity and Originality need not mean something extreme... the sort of novelty that many contemporary artists confuse with true originality. Originality does not mean that one cannot build one's work upon a foundation of favorite artists of the past. It does mean, however, that the vision is something more than to merely mimic the art of one's idols. It means building upon and expanding upon one's predecessors until the work becomes uniquely one's own. Picasso, for example, clearly borrows from medieval Spanish art, Greek and Roman art, African art, Gauguin, Goya, and numerous others. The end product, however, will never be confused with his models. His paintings are always uniquely Picasso. The same is true of a far more conservative painter such as Lucian Freud. His paintings owe much to Frans Hals, Velasquez, and Rembrandt... but they look nothing like the works of these eminent masters.

The world is continually reborn anew. The lighting, the colors, the experiences and the predecessors under which we work are not the same as that of our artistic predecessors. How each of us sees the world is unique. Great art is that which gives form to this rather than merely attempting... however competently... to replicate how someone else saw the world. That is the goal of the craftsman and the restorer... not the artist.
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:04 PM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

Original, painting the mountain as you see it
Creative, painting the mountain as it can be seen
Visionary, you are painted by the mountain
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Old 04-07-2009, 10:55 AM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

a good way to see 'originality, creative, and visionary' examples is to do a group project with a few artists ... everyone works from the same original (be it life or a photo) ... each artists 'style' will be apparent in each work, and they will ALL be quite dramatically different. As to which one is 'good' or 'the best' or 'worthy of jury choice' is completely subjective and cannot be predicted - ever!

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Old 04-14-2009, 03:52 AM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

To me, technique is essential to expanding the range of originality, creativity, and vision. Without technique, one must make do with whatever limits they're left with. Technical limitations tend to reduce the vision that can be manifested and the articulateness of what is expressed. Originality is, to me, that uniqueness of vision that an adept artist renders faithfully, manifesting either what is inside the mind's eye, the creative space of the brain, or the translation of the world through a personal lens that sees and brings out something that perhaps others miss. Creativity is, to me, the ease with which the kaleidoscope of a person's experience or way of seeing is converted into imagery that is original, artfully arranged, and perhaps even visionary.
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Old 04-15-2009, 04:55 PM
AllisonR AllisonR is offline
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

Originally Posted by ArtSavesLives
Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . . for the purposes of understanding what a juror looks for in a work when hanging and awarding an exhibit.

It means "we are being vague enough that no matter what is submitted, we can decide what will/ will not show because any artwork can be interpreted to meet / not meet these three criteria.

Yuck, that sounded more bitter or jaded than I intended. I think it is logical to ask for these three criteria, it's been done countless times before. And some shows are open to various styles, whereas other shows would have some more concrete criteria, like water colors, or landscapes or large scale.....
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Old 04-16-2009, 03:47 PM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

It is ultimately technique that makes or breaks the art, whatever it is. Whether or not it is masterfully rendered is the primary objective criterion; personal taste decides whether or not that category of well-rendered piece is actually considered "art" or is regarded highly. Thus, it seems to me you have two elements in play: technical mastery that cannot be ignored and the personal tastes of the jurors.
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Old 05-22-2009, 10:37 AM
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Re: Please help define "originality, vision and creativity" . . .

I'll give the subect a whirl. To me, originality, creativity and vision have to do with development just as a similar theam would infuence a book, or other artistic epression.

What seems so hard to say (or grasp) is that these are subjectless, absctact nouns. The judge and aritst need to place the referance point. For instance: Creativity when it comes to: subject, technique, statement, whether or not it is a visual cliche. You could probably put together a list of 100 things about which a work of art can be "creative"

Take a look at a piece of art considered a masterwork, or creative. The other day I was looking at Warhol's soup cans. Okay. What is this painting "about?"

The design of the "multiple" soup cans was original for the time (about 1963). The idea of a silk screen or painting of a tin can took many people aback, and was rejected by others. It was artisticly done but steril, and showed a mastery of the technique. Now what is the artists "vision" -- well, modern Icons, ubiquitous items being art, commercialism, consumerism, and so on.

The picture did not say 1000 words, it said a million, and was a logical Next step in the development of art history.

This is the sort of stuff a student at an art school must come up with. You are graded by the same sorts of criteria. It determines whether a piece is "sucessful" or not. Which art work works at all levels of the judging criteria? If a work is mearly pretty but falls flat of having any meaning, it might loose to a work with poorer technique that has more "meaning" or is sucessful in more categories.

Technique is the only thing that can be graded at schools, but usually do not impress very many people-- When they choose judges they usually choose people with a good eye for the quality of work expected in a professional-- so good technique alone will fool no one.

Each jourer has a different standard often born out by their own background and eperience.
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