Image: "The Question" by Flickr user Jesse Means

Image: “The Question” by Flickr user Jesse Means

Do you have a formal definition of arts and culture that you use in your work? Createquity is collecting examples of such definitions in order to inform our definition of a healthy arts ecosystem.

In the current definition, we state that “we have decided to use a conventional, discipline-based definition of arts and culture for the time being…The industry boundaries that include most of our audience can be described relatively simply as the confluence of the visual arts, dance, film and electronic media, music, theater, and literature, along with support structures for activities in those disciplines.”

We recognize the limitations of this definition (for example, some artists don’t define their work by any of the above disciplines, but still consider themselves artists). We’ve also been considering adding other creative/cultural disciplines besides those listed above to our field of study (such as architecture or culinary arts). However, we are also curious if there’s a good definition of the arts that doesn’t rely on disciplines at all. For example, should the arts be defined not by the activities itself, but the motivations behind these activities? Or the structures that support them?

We would appreciate if you could email or post in the comments with YOUR definitions of the arts, especially if they do NOT rely on listing specific artistic disciplines. Though we welcome all suggestions, we are particularly interested in definitions that have actually been formalized by institutions or researchers as a guideline for your work.