What is Art? (Part 1)

What is Art? A bit like how long is a piece of string, it may seem like an impossible question to answer. In fact I thought through a million ways in which I could write this together with a million different titles. The problem is art is so much more than another piece of decor to add to your schemes and so there is no real answer to what it is.

When pulling together a scheme the first element you would consider is the space and how you will arrange the furniture. So number one priority is obviously then what furniture to get, all of which normally serves a specific purpose. Then you would look at colours and fabrics and see how they all tie together. The decorative items are the icing on the cake and create that polished “designer” look.

So why complicate matters with artwork? Why put so much thought into it when all you had to do for all the previous items, was to ensure they fit into the colour palette?

The answer of course is you certainly don’t have to! The market is full of widely accessible prints and original pieces that it is very easy to pick a colour and find a piece that will work well with your scheme. This method works well for a lot of people.

Just for a minute I want you to look around you. If you are at work, what makes you smile? If you are at home, what is it that makes you instantly relax after a hard days work?

Ali artwork by mister mistry buy  here

Ali artwork by mister mistry buy here

The answer is not what you think. It is less about your favourite chair and more if not everything to do with your senses. The feel of the floor on your bare feet as you kick off those heels after a long day. The smiles and the atmosphere as your clients tell you how happy they have been with your service. That song that reminds you of your very first kiss. None of these things are truly physical, but are your senses telling you that you are comfortable, you are happy, you are safe. Now where does art come into this?

Someone once told me “It isn’t real art unless it is on a canvas”. Now I of course know that what they meant to say is they didn’t want a mass produced print, they wanted a unique piece of original artwork. But it got me thinking about the perception of art and how little people really understand. Art can take literally any form, from a piece of hand crafted jewellery to a mural that covers an entire building. Art for the interiors could be a sculptural piece, a wall hanging or a mural of a summer meadow in your dining room. What is important when you are looking to invest in a piece of any art is how it actually makes you feel.

When I commissioned my very first piece for my own home, from the super talented Yasi (see her work here), many years ago, I knew I needed something to make my living room more comfortable. I had everything I needed in the room, yet I never felt at peace there, for reasons I didn’t quite understand. Once the canvas was hung, I knew it was exactly what I was missing. Even now years later, the room has changed numerous times (the curse of an interior designer!) and the painting still holds its place. On days when I feel really really crap. I will lose myself staring at all the beautiful colours and strokes and will instantly feel better. It has become my happy place.

yasi art work mardi gras blue feather designs

I know that some of you may be thinking you don’t need this. To be honest not everyone does need it, as you may find the same happy spot in your favourite chair or your favourite dress even. However, I urge you to think about what you put in your environment and how it affects your wellbeing. How does each item make you feel? The aim of course is for everything around you to feel like a cocoon of happiness!