What’s the Difference Between Art and Design?
What exactly is the difference between art and design?
The M+ Collections are separated into three categories: visual art, design and architecture, and moving image. These categorisations can be useful; however, often, the boundaries between them are blurred. How, then, can we define whether something is an ‘artwork’ or a ‘design object’?
First of all, let’s quickly go over some of the traditional differences between art and design:
- Design is functional, art is not.
- Design solves a problem, art expresses a feeling or idea.
- Design objects are mass-produced, artworks are unique.
- Design is objective, art is subjective.
Think of some of the artworks or design objects you’re familiar with. You’ll probably find that you can slot many of them neatly into these two categories—but you might also find examples that poke holes in this art/design boundary.