Understanding of Fine Art and History

Understanding fine art is one form of visual art by using visible and touchable media that contains aesthetics, namely how beauty can be formed, and how to feel it. The term art which in English is called fine art, refers to the art form practiced primarily for its aesthetic value and beauty rather than its functional value (art for art).
Initially art was based on painting, graphic art (drawing) and sculpture, but in its development, the art field continued to be expanded to embrace new art activities arising from technological developments or artistic inventions such as photography and architecture.

Architecture is traditionally seen as fine art, especially if the aesthetics are highlighted, not the technical components. Architectural works such as the Egyptian Pyramid, the Great Wall of China, the Greek Parthenon, Chartres Cathedral, the Taj Mahal and the Eiffel Tower, are important cultural symbols and works of art that symbolize their historical civilization. Even so, architecture has more or less other art disciplines, and may indeed be considered more than applied art.

History of Fine Arts
Fine art is a type of art that already existed in prehistoric times such as the Acheulian period with the Venus statue from Berekhat Ram (basaltic statue, 230,000-700,000 BC) and Venus from Tan-Tan (quartzite sculpture, 200,000-500,000 BC) and paintings in the Chauvet cave (30,000 BC).
In the era of ancient Mediterranean civilization, including Greek, Roman and Byzantine culture, as well as medieval Carolingian, Ottonian, Roman and Gothic art, artists were considered only as skilled workers. It was not until the Renaissance, the “artist” profession was elevated to a higher level, because it reflected the importance of the element of “art of design”.
Starting in the 16th century, art schools were established for people who wanted to become professional artists. The earliest two schools (academies) are the Academy of the Art of Design in Florence (the Accademia dell’Arte del Disegno) and the Rome Academy of Fine Arts (Accademia di San Luca). This educational institution teaches a very traditional type of academic art, which is based on the principles of Renaissance art, which regulates things such as subject matter, form, message, composition, color and so on.
The art academy at that time also established a strict order of art levels, for example ranking the paintings in the order of importance as follows: (1) Historical paintings (2) Portraits (3) Paintings (4) Landscape (5) Still Life. Thus, a historical painting (which means an image with “isoria” or narrative) is judged to be more elevated than a scene or painting without containing humans. But in the 20th century, when Cubism and Surrealism emerged, the rules of the art academy were lost.


Development of Fine Arts
In England in the late 19th century, there began to be distinguished between pure aesthetic art and decorative (functional) art. However, since the 20th century, with the introduction of the art category, the difference has become blurred. Many other non-design activities are considered as fine art. Some handicrafts or decorative arts (especially ceramics), including photography and architecture are now considered fine arts, although the latter is understood as applied art.
At present it is known as 2 terms of the art category namely pure art and applied art. Pure art refers to works that are only for the purpose of satisfying personal excretion, while applied fine arts emphasize the function and ease of production (crafts).


Examples of pure art
• Art painting
• Graphic art
• Sculpture
• Performing Arts
• Film art
• Choreographic art
• Art of photography
• Etc


Examples of applied fine arts
• Architectural Design
• Graphic design
• Interior design
• Fashion design
• Woodcraft
• Rattan craft
• Batik crafts
• Ceramic crafts
• Etc.


Modern / Contemporary Art
Contemporary art has expanded the boundaries of art. For example, contemporary artists in making sculptures now use a variety of new materials and new forms (such as statues of plastic, acrylic, etc.). Graphic printing has taken advantage of a new commercial printing process, such as designing and printing using a computer which of course the manufacturing process will not be as long as ancient art.