That's not art!

Dec. 12, 2008
In this month's CAD/CAM e-newsletter, I featured a granite sculpture that currently resides in the Autodesk Gallery at One Market in San Francisco. According to the developer, the gallery contains the work of "visionary artists, architects, engineers, ...

In this month's CAD/CAM e-newsletter, I featured a granite sculpture that currently resides in the Autodesk Gallery at One Market in San Francisco. According to the developer, the gallery contains the work of "visionary artists, architects, engineers, consumer-product designers, and students." I thought the design was kind of cool and said it probably would not have been possible without CAD.

A few readers got me to rethink whether the sculpture is actually "art," or even that visionary. Kwong Wong writes: "Please don't take this the wrong way, but how does putting together a wacky shape in a 3D design package and then having a shop in China (or anywhere else for that matter) carve it out of granite count as “Art Work.” Along those lines, having a bolt designed in a CAD package and machined with CAM process seems to be even better artwork with greater discipline. Anyone who has played with a CAD package probably has pulled library shapes and assembled a few things at random and as I see it, this “Art” exhibits the same depth of thought."

And Dimitri Galitzine from Design Development Associates LLC points out that a non-profit entity has already been providing a full-service stone-sculpture fabrication-facility for artists, architects, and designers.

Now that I think of it, the old art of signmaking went by the wayside years ago, with CAD driving automated routers. So what's the big deal about cutting a cement sculpture?

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