Handmade Crafts – Are They Art?
What is art? Just as photography has struggled to gain acceptance in the art world, handmade crafts, or “handicrafts” as they have often been better known,
have also often failed to win over the critics.
The term "handmade crafts" is used to refer to a number of forms of work in which decorative and useful objects alike or made with simple
tools or even entirely by hand. Handmade crafts center around their traditional nature and involve a wide range of materials from paper to
Handcrafts have their roots in the traditional rural crafts of the most ancient civilizations, with many crafts having been practiced for
hundreds of years. There are others, however, which are more modern inventions while others are more widespread versions of crafts which
once were only found in a small part of the world.
The main criterion of a handcrafted piece is its individual artisanship. Anything which is made by a machine or through mass production
cannot be a handcrafted item. Many handcrafted items are now copied and mass-produced, however they lack the character of the original.
Unlike art, which is often a pure talent, many crafts require patience, skill development and practice, but eventually, almost anyone can
learn how to do them.
Many of the materials used to make handcrafted pieces exceed the boundary of the West's tradition of fine art. Materials like wood, metal,
textiles, glass and ceramics are often used.
Students in schools around the world also often learn some forms of handcrafts as part of their education. Woodwork and metalwork are often
studied at some point during a child's school career while other skills like jewelry making, lace making and crochet are usually learned
in the home environment.