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DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 24th, 2017, 2:16 pm
by delisea
Hi,
This a great website for inspiration from art and nature. Check it out.
http://bskr.com/
Cheers,
Symon

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 24th, 2017, 4:55 pm
by treeman
The pine with the eagle is superb.
But your point?

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 24th, 2017, 6:57 pm
by delisea
treeman wrote:The pine with the eagle is superb.
But your point?

It is a great site for inspiration, the pictures of wild trees are outstanding and a great reference.

My point is that the site's author is clearly saying something by putting side-by-side great tree photos and paintings, modern art (Giacometti !!), contemporary art and his own bonsai. He is saying "these little trees I make are art".

I noticed that some here don't like saying that what they are doing is art. They are also scared/don't like for bonsai to be anything but a literal copy of nature. Art can be conceptual. If bonsai is art, it to can be conceptual. The great Murata understood this.
FudoLife.jpg


I don't do conceptual bonsai, but plenty do and it is good.

Cheers,
Symon

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 24th, 2017, 7:34 pm
by Nate.bonsai
Oh wow, I hadn't seen that tree before, and I count my 1,267 bonsai image collection, not including hard copy commemorative albums, pretty comprehensive.

I have a thing for abstract bonsai, by which I mean bonsai that are more abstract sculpture than anything resembling nature. Here are a few that I consider more abstract and artistic and I especially like the last one.

Thanks of the link and the great pic.

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 7:56 am
by delisea
Hi Nate,
It is impossible to look at these and not agree that bonsai art. That Ume is one of my favorites - Kokufu winner I think?

Some will think these are an abomination and offense against nature. That is good too. I think Sno said here recently you can say my trees are horrible if you like but if you say they are boring and I will be offended.

Cheers,
Symon

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 8:13 am
by treeman
delisea wrote:
treeman wrote:The pine with the eagle is superb.
But your point?

It is a great site for inspiration, the pictures of wild trees are outstanding and a great reference.

My point is that the site's author is clearly saying something by putting side-by-side great tree photos and paintings, modern art (Giacometti !!), contemporary art and his own bonsai. He is saying "these little trees I make are art".

I noticed that some here don't like saying that what they are doing is art. They are also scared/don't like for bonsai to be anything but a literal copy of nature. Art can be conceptual. If bonsai is art, it to can be conceptual. The great Murata understood this.
FudoLife.jpg


I don't do conceptual bonsai, but plenty do and it is good.

Cheers,
Symon

I know where you are coming from, but to me, taking something which nature has created and putting it in a pot is not art. Just like suiseki. Beautiful yes, evocative yes, desirable yes but not art surely.

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 10:06 am
by wrcmad
treeman wrote: I know where you are coming from, but to me, taking something which nature has created and putting it in a pot is not art. Just like suiseki. Beautiful yes, evocative yes, desirable yes but not art surely.


I disagree.
You are correct that taking something which nature has created and putting it in a pot is not art... but that's what you will find at your local nursery or big green shed.
If that is all that was involved in bonsai, then this forum wouldn't exist... there would be nothing to discuss, with regards to things like balance, flow, techniques like wiring, nebari, shari, carving, grafting, ramification.. etc. The list of techniques used to sculpt a tree into an evocative display is huge.
For all intents and purposes, art is a form of creative work that is the producing of works to be appreciated primarily for their aesthetic beauty or emotional power.... encapsulates the purpose of bonsai pretty well IMHO.
Any debate against this purpose would have to represent a minority view, and surely negates most discussion here on this forum.

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 11:38 am
by treeman
="wrcmad"]

I disagree.

If that is all that was involved in bonsai, then this forum wouldn't exist... there would be nothing to discuss, with regards to things like balance, flow, techniques like wiring, nebari, shari, carving, grafting, ramification.. etc. The list of techniques used to sculpt a tree into an evocative display is huge.


I see all of those things as a craft which can be learned. There's plenty of that to be discussed.

For all intents and purposes, art is a form of creative work that is the producing of works to be appreciated primarily for their aesthetic beauty or emotional power


And that's the dictionary definition. To me though, art is a very personal thing and not made for the appreciation of others. That others do appreciate it is besides the point. Each observer will have a different interpretation according to their own life experiences. To me art is made purely for the satisfaction of the creator. It's an overwhelming desire for the artist to bring out of what is inside of him/her. I like to call art a mind ejaculation. For example, I don't consider most photography art nor realistic landscapes unless the image comes from the mind rather than what is in front of you. I don't consider someone playing Round Midnight on the piano an artist but Thelonious Monk who wrote the tune, yes he is the artist.
The most simple form might be sitting down a child and asking them to draw something out of their head.
If someone sets out to please another with his work, he is not doing art IMO.


Any debate against this purpose would have to represent a minority view, and surely negates most discussion here on this forum.


I think you are right about it being a minority view. I don't know about negating discussions but either way I have given my point of view about this subject enough to feel there's no point going on too much more about it. I have saved some of those tree images you posted!

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 12:52 pm
by wrcmad
treeman wrote:I see all of those things as a craft which can be learned. There's plenty of that to be discussed.

Some of the techniques could be considered craft-like.
But a work of craft is duplicable.
Each work of art is unique, as is each tree.

treeman wrote:To me though, art is a very personal thing and not made for the appreciation of others. That others do appreciate it is besides the point. Each observer will have a different interpretation according to their own life experiences. To me art is made purely for the satisfaction of the creator.

Sounds like your previously expressed view of bonsai to me?

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 1:21 pm
by delisea
OK Treeman you don't make art, but you do listen to Monk so all else is excused.

The original point of the post was that it was a cool website with some great tree images. If any one can create a tree that have the essence of these trees below, or some of Kimura's trees above in Nate's post, I think you have created art because for me these images have an emotional power.
somersetsarah_20170823070953903[1].jpg
georgie.mann.photos_20170805230441958[1].jpg

Cheers,
Symon

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 1:31 pm
by treeman
delisea wrote:OK Treeman you don't make art, but you do listen to Monk so all else is excused.


I actually learned to play round midnight and straight no chaser once. (no impro of course) but If I didn't play them every couple of days I'd forget everything :oops: Now I can barely tell the difference between black and white keys :palm:

The original point of the post was that it was a cool website with some great tree images.


Yes I saved some!

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 5:15 pm
by Keep Calm and Ramify
delisea wrote: I think you have created art because for me these images have an emotional power.


:wave: delisea,
Interesting topic.
The below images hold no emotional power to me - do you think these SHOULD be considered as art anyway?
The word Art is so loosely thrown around by many - nail art?, hair art?, vegie carving art? shell art? tin can art?..............bonsai art?
Is art that simple?

Geeze, I suddenly feel like eating some fruit- maybe these images do hold some emotional power!

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 5:46 pm
by GavinG
Just to throw another handful of grit into the gearbox...

All of delisea's and Nate's trunks are completely "natural", although the posters are calling them "abstract" bonsai - interesting. Nature can be far more extreme than anything we come up with. What we "design" mostly looks predictable.

Our activity (note the neutral term) is unique in its use of "natural" elements and processes embedded as part of our creative efforts. "Art" or "Craft" doesn't do it justice. And they're only words. The images are much more powerful.

Mendelssohn the composer wrote about his music that its meaning was far too precise to put into words - I feel the same about our trees. They are what they are, and wordage only rarely contributes much at all.

Thanks for posting the images. I wonder when we'll see real reflections of the toughness and desperation of our arid heart as bonsai. Or will we just skim around the edges, in much the same way as our cities mostly sit at the edges, on the coast?

Fire at will.

Gavin

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 8:26 pm
by Nate.bonsai
Gavin, I agree that all of the trunks posted are natural i.e. Collected yamadori stock.

But, they have all had a LOT of work put into them by the hands of man. They are certainly not 'pick up and chuck in a pot' bonsai. It is that intervention which has really pulled them beyond the natural(ish) bonsai norm and taken them, in my opinion, towards the realm of abstraction and, again in my opinion, art - as in pure art/fine art and certainly beyond mere craft.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Re: DON'T open this post if you think bonsai isn't art.

PostPosted: August 25th, 2017, 8:57 pm
by anthonyW
The day it went into a pot ,it went Unnatural...then/now you have to be creative to aspire to or what you see in mind/tree....be it inspiration,...I call that art..no spin

:beer: