Quotes by Ruskin, Fornasetti and Morris

Ruskin states: “that imperfection is in some way sort of essential to all that we know of life. It is the sign of life in a mortal body, that is to say, of a state of progress and change. Nothing that lives is, or can be, rigidly perfect; part of it is decaying, part nascent…. And in all things that live there are certain irregularities and deficiencies which are not only signs of life, but sources of beauty…. To banish imperfection is to destroy expression, to check exertion, to paralyse vitality. All things are literally better, lovelier, and more beloved for the imperfections which have been divinely appointed, that the law of human life may be Effort, and the law of human judgment, Mercy.” 1853 “What I look for in every object,” said Fornasetti, “is the mark of man.” The ‘mark of man’ or the mark of the hand? John Ruskin in response to the writings of Henry Cole, who attempted to promote the co-operation between art and industry in conjunction with the Great Exhibition of 1851, stressed the importance of work by hand as opposed to mechanical work, for the good of the product and for the well-being of the worker involved in its manufacture. (William Morris absorbed these words and in) Ruskin’s second volume of The Stones of Venice – The Nature of Gothic, Morris argued that “man-made articles should reveal, rather than seek to disguise, their origins, and that individuality and roughness of workmanship were infinitely preferable to the perfection and standardization, in a free and just society…. Asserting the superiority of the products of the creative craftsman over those of the factory.”

Some words of wisdom…..????? I personally agree with such statements, and for me a source of inspiration. For those craftsmen seeking perfection (as am I) perhaps we should take note of Ruskin, Morris and Fornasetti. Three exempt designers and artists excusing the imperfection of the hand.

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