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Arts and Crafts

2,842 artworks, 494 artists
Decorative and applied arts (lat. decoro — “decorate”) is creative activity aiming for the creation of art products. The aesthetic concerns go by the wayside in these works giving way to the practical use of the made product in everyday life. Artists combine the utilitarian and aesthetic principles, shape the surrounding domestic environment, and fill it with convenience, beauty and harmony. There are two main areas of arts and crafts. The first is items in which the artist highlights the applied quality with the elements of aesthetic excellence: furniture, dishes, jewelry. The second area includes decorative ornaments with minimal practical use: interior painting and household items, embroidery, figurines, carpets and tapestries.

“Domestic art” exists and accompanies society throughout its existence. Since ancient times, people adorned their homes and the objects they used. Decorativeness had its aesthetic features and depended on the level of material processing technology development, ethnic traditions; it reflected the influence of fine art, literature, philosophy trends and styles. Over the past millennium, society was even more interested in the materials variety and diversity, as well as the complexity of the process. Possession of works of arts and crafts has become an indicator of social status, wealth, belonging to a cult or professional community.

The stylization of objects is distinguished by a creative and imitative component. The creative style reflects the personality, individual character of an artist, his/her vision of the subject and its place in the surrounding aesthetics, the subjective interpretation of harmony and convenience. The imitative style copies the artistic trends of fine art and the works by the talented artists of the era; it is not devoid of the national elements. Different kinds of arts and crafts still are in continuous development and quantitative replenishment. Every year, new technologies and materials, fashion trends and criteria for evaluating works appear. Professional artists and amateur needlewomen annually create the unexpected masterpieces using the available materials: embroidery, art carving, weaving, carpet weaving and leather processing.

Examples of works of decorative and applied art:
Adoration of the Magi” 1890 by Edward Coley Burne-Jones; “Small Owl Jug” 1950 by Pablo Picasso; “Strawberry Thief” 1883; “The Orchard” 1890 by William Morris; “Fruit of Life" vase 1985, a collection of designer labels and decanters “The Way of the Vine” 1990 by Romain de Tirtoff (Erté); “Chess” 1944 by Max Ernst; “Pegasus” 1990 by Ernst Fuchs.

The artists who worked in decorative and applied art:
Romain de Tirtoff (Erté); Edward Coley Burne-Jones; William Morris.
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