Day 30 of 31 Days of Art:
Is Your Art Hackable?

Hackable.  The term "hackable" shows up in so many places now.  It used to mean that computer geeks could break into sites by "hacking the code."  But now the word has come to mean something is "copy-able."  It means you can make a reasonable imitation of it. You hear the word "hackable" a lot in the do it yourself interior design community.  



In fact, there is a whole show based on hacking designs. It's an HGTV show called the "The High/Low Project".   The premise of the show is designer Sabrina Soto designs a  high-end room for clients, and then reinvents the design with low cost alternatives.  I like that she is hacking her own design. This particular room in the high end version was $29,000.  Sabrina recreated the look for $4,000.   It was very cool how she expressed her room design in an upper end and lower budget way.  I like befores and afters, and I've seen her on another show where she stages homes to get ready to sell. She's a very good designer. The art of creating a room is amazing to me - that someone can create a 3D art environment to live in is a gift. Interior designers use art and color pops the way a painter might use a single brushstroke of red in an otherwise neutral painting. 

I was enjoying the show.  But then  Sabrina took an artist's piece off the wall and "hacked" the art in a low cost way using paper.   It's interesting that I was fine with it as long as she was using a funky thrift couch to express the vibe of the designer sofa.  Or even when they copied the kidney shaped ottoman exactly.  But when it was someone's one of a kind ART it bothered me.  Hmmmmm.  She was not copying the art - more like creating something in the spirit of the high end art using the same colorways.  But  still, this brings up all kinds of thoughts for me in all kinds of directions.
How would you feel if it had been your art hanging in the high end room that got taken off the wall and hacked?
Is your art hackable?
If I am making art that is simple for someone else to mimic is it my own darn fault if I get copied?
Is an ottoman art? They copied the high end ottoman exactly.  The high end ottoman itself was a copy of a mid-century modern design.   Why wasn't I bothered when the ottoman was copied?
Has the DIY community undermined the place of art in our world or given it more of a place by inspiring people to make their own art?
Just because something is copyable, does that mean it's okay to copy it?
One of my focuses, studying antique folk art dolls, has been about re-creating a doll inspired by Izannah Walker's work.  In a sense, I and many other people are "hacking" historical objects.  Or continuing a tradition.  Depending on your viewpoint. 

I hacked this graphic (copied it) from an antique book.  
Then I changed the color to sepia.

Hackable.

Your thoughts?

"Do not let what you cannot do
keep you from doing what you can do."

John Wooden




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