Art is a commodity, a product of capitalism

What counts as “valuable” can be defined in a variety of ways. Most websites suffer from unoriginality; they belong to the herd of mediocrity and banality. This is not creativity Art and objects, websites and businesses can take on a life of their own - ideas can snowball and literally grow and survive by themselves.  

Objects take on a life of their own when they leave the creators hands. They are no longer the responsibility of the artist (craftsman) - they move through time, out living their custodians, moving on through history and catastrophe. They are survivors. 

Art is a commodity, a product of capitalism.

Cover of "The Hare with Amber Eyes: A Fam...
The Hare With Amber Eyes: A Hidden Inheritance, is a book about 'the history of objects' or in this case a collection of objects, an inherited collection of Japanese netsuke. 

Tiny and tactile the netsuke are "small, tough explosions of exactitude." Their story spans cultures and continents. They were originally the possessions (the collection) of the Ephrussis, who where wealthy Jewish grain traders, who spread from Russia to the important, wealthy capitals of Europe - their Ukrainian Jewish banking and oil dynasty finally being destroyed by the Nazis, after the 1938 "Anschluss".

These objects tell a fascinating story about the way the world has been moulded by the need for commodities and trade, greed, war and jealousy. They tell of how people and objects have migrated around the world and show how historically important ports like Odessa are for the spread of ideas, culture and objects.

The cliché 'we can learn from history' is in many cases nonsense - we continue to make the same mistakes over and over again. We do however have to ride that fast learning curve to create new products and have new ideas. Business is not a static immovable object it has to evolve. We have to morph into different markets, pushing our ideas onto the next phase - this is what artists do. Boundaries have to be broken and new frontiers challenged or we simply have to do it better than our rivals. We simply have to be creative.

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