When I was new and asked how the non-martial pursuits were divided between Arts and Science, I was given some silly reasons.  “If you drop it on your foot and it hurts, it’s a Science.”  “If you drop it and it clanks or breaks, it’s a Science.”  "Science uses math or fire, but Art does not."  The existence of these “reasons” is not proof that there is NO distinction, they merely point out that it IS difficult to make the distinction, and that most people don’t really give it much thought.

If I ask you to define beauty, and you cannot easily answer me, that doesn’t mean that there is no such thing as beauty.  Further, some people would be able to give a good definition, and other people would give a different, also good, definition.  Lack of an easy answer, or having multiple answers, to the question of what’s an art vs. what’s a science doesn’t mean that there is NO answer.  The distinction may be arbitrary and subjective, but there’s nothing wrong with that.

Here is how I divide up the arts and the sciences.  An art is an activity in pursuit of beauty.  A science is an activity in pursuit of utility.  This is not to say that beautiful things cannot be useful, or useful things cannot be beautiful.  The distinction lies in the primary goal of the activity.  A mug that holds your beer can and should look cool.  But a delicate, translucent, China teacup is more than just a drinking vessel.  It’s pretty, and it wouldn’t be the same if it weren’t.  A well made wooden bench is a joy to behold, but an intricately carved wooden statue of a saint is to be looked at, and venerated if that’s your deal, and not merely utilitarian.  Michelangelo's "David" is NOT an example of a science, even though Calontir tends to categorize sculpture as science.  By the same token, a sturdy Elizabethan corset isn't really an example of an art, even though costuming is generally recognized as art.

Discussions like this one are how our Society evolves and grows.  There you have my contribution.  Next?


Greetings one and all,

Something that has bothered me for more than several years and many Reigns:
Every year or so we have the same subject come up. Combining the Arts GOA's and the Sciences GOA's under one award. What bothers me about this is the difference in the two discipline tracks which I define loosely as: Arts-I can break it with a hammer (yes I can break Elizabethan costume with a hammer), and Sciences-I make it with a hammer, it is my definition-one that works for me.
I hear no discussion occurring on combining the now 3 different Marshallate GOA's under the same thought process, although by logic if it is good for one to streamline its good for all.
I am opposed to a combined A&S GOA. It leaves many starting over in the awards structure as then the pool of individuals to satisfy becomes much larger, and the number of folks who know nothing of the craft in question are now getting to discuss folks without adequate basis in the skills required.
The biggest concern here is that the people who always want this to happen, are people who already have these awards, and just seem to want to put a mark on Kingdom history and customs, IMO be it good or bad. That is a rather self-centered and self-serving stance IMO. There was a reason for the creation of the current award structure, and one that has served us well.
Discuss away

Master Gottfried von Koln, OP